Founder of La Mère Culinaire
33-year old Emirati national, Arwa A. Lootahwas born and bred in Dubai, and previously worked in the art field before launching her cookery blog La Mère Culinaire – through which she also sells freshly baked cookies and preserves. Arwa lives in Muhaisna with her husband and two boys, and has always been passionate about art, design and cooking. The blogger took on cooking full time to cater to her family’s evolving palate, and is on a mission to bring creativity to home kitchens.
About the blog
tI started the blog because I felt that creative side missing from my life after I stopped working. I didn’t have much time to paint after my first baby, and so I decided to be creative in the kitchen instead. Once I started cooking, I thought, why not write about it? There were hardly any Emirati food bloggers at that time, so I wanted to share my recipes which have an Emirati twist, with the world.
LaMereCulinaire.com was launched four years ago, and it covers all my food experiences, recipes, and everything about the Emirati food culture. I also sell freshly baked cookies through the blog, in flavours such as karak, lemon lavender and rose pistachio with white chocolate.
A foodie destination on my list
New York! I would like to visit the city to explore it, get inspired by the food trends and try out new dishes and ingredients.
My inspiration stems from:
Everything around me! Whether it’s a single herb, spice, or a fruit I love.
Food is an art because to make good dishes, you need to be creative in flavour pairing, taste, and of course, master the art of plating.
Always toast your spices when cooking, to bring out its aroma.
Definitely saffron – I like to splurge on high quality saffron.
A foodie personality I’d love to dine with…
Celebrity chef Vineet Bhatia, because I like his innovativeness with Indian cuisine. If I had to cook one dish for him, it would be Salmon fogah – a spiced Emirati rice dish with salmon on top. It’s not typical to make this dish with salmon, but I fell in love with it, and learnt the recipe, after my mother made it for me.
My pantry staples
Cardamom, saffron, rose water, lemon and black pepper – these are all essentials in Emirati cuisine.