Food, Online Magazine, Showdown

Pastries & Pâtissières

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Celebrating the female pâtissières of the Gulf and the gastronomical magic of French Cream.


As part of an international showcase of French cream in Dubai, an all-female cast of top-notch pâtissières from Saudi Arabia, UAE, and France gathered in a two-day roundtable discussion and pastry experience organized by the CNIEL, the French Dairy Board and the European Commission.

Taking place at the Le Méridien Mina Seyahi Beach Resort & Marina, chefs from some of the Gulf’s notable hotels and bakeries gathered to highlight the finest cream imported from France, and the important takeaways from sustainability, teamwork, and sourcing using the finest ingredients.

The team of pastry Chefs included Ida Martin, Pastry Chef at Queen Elizabeth2; Hind Al Mulla, founder and director of Home Bakery; and Aaliya Randeree, Head Chef and founder of Butterworks Bakery, along with UAE-based consultant Chef Liz Stevenson and Saudi Arabia’s Najla Shamiri. The meeting was rounded off by the 2017 French-based pastry chef of the year, Chef Nina Métayer.

The roundtable discussions encompassed an array of topics, one of which quashed outdated negative myths about women’s inability to be professional chefs in a kitchen. Chef Stevenson stated, “All individuals bring something different to the kitchen regardless of gender. It should be about creating something that tastes good and is representative of the individual.”

Chef Métayer added onto this statement, “It’s important everyone in the kitchen is working together and showcasing the very best desserts and pastries, male or female has no bearing for me, it’s all about creating the best possible taste.”

International Project Manager from CNIEL, Marie-Laure Martin, concluded the roundtable by noting the incredible talent in the field from the Middle East and internationally. “The flair and passion on show has been incredible and we have been treated to some of the best pastries in the world.”

During the afternoon tea session, the talented women in pastry whipped up scrumptious treats and developed their own unique creations using French cream along with an assortment of other ingredients.

chef-liz-copyLiz Stevenson, Consultant Chef, Dubai
Pastry Chef Consultant
Based in Dubai

Chef Liz paired dark chocolate cream and iced yogurt to create a beautifully flavored, richly textured treat with nut caramel and black sesame toppings.

Instagram: lizziebettybif

chef-nina-copyNina Métayer
Pastry Chef Consultant based between London and France

A crisp accompaniment to vanilla tonka chantilly, Chef Nina prepared a spectacular creamy grapefruit meringue.

Instagram: ninametayer

chef-najla-copyNajla Shamiri
Cofounder of Knead
Bakery & Pastry Chef Consultant in Jeddah

Chef Najla made a moist date cake served with salted caramel sauce and topped with Arabic coffee cream.

Instagram: chef.najla

chef-ida-copyIda Martin
Head Pastry Chef at Queen Elizabeth 2 in Dubai

Chef Ida whipped up a chocolate-and-orange entremet with a luscious pistachio whipped ganache.

Instagram: chef_idavictoria

chef-aaliya-copyAaliya Randeree
Founder and Head Pastry
Chef of ButterWorks Bakery in Dubai

Chef Aaliya assembled rich dark chocolate with walnuts, honey, and rose-infused whipped cream for a wonderful dessert.

Instagram: butterworksbakery

chef-hind-copyHind Al Mulla
Founder of Home Bakery in Dubai

Chef Hind created an entremet with cardamom and cinnamon whipped cream that had authentic Emirati taste and flavor.

Instagram: home_bakery

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