Our Pre-Ramadan Gathering

Over the past few years, we’ve built up a bit of a tradition where we host a pre-Ramadan lunch on the Friday before Ramadan starts. Its our last chance to hang out with family and friends without being exhausted from a full day of fasting. Its also a way of preparing and letting our kids experience the joys of the upcoming month.

Although we gather a lot during Ramadan, its always late in the evening and the kids are more than likely already asleep (or cranky and in desperate need of sleep!) and thats one of the main reasons why I like to host something in the day time, before the month begins. Sometimes we host it at home and some times we opt go to one of the many brunches in Dubai or Abu Dhabi. This year, we decided to have it at home and had top-notch quality catering done by Imperial Catering. They did a lovely job in setting up a gorgeous iftar-like set up in our backyard for our 15 adult guests and 6 kids between us.

The Set-up

After letting them know the date, they scheduled a visit to see the space and what kind of set up would work best. Initially, I wanted something indoors so that it wouldn’t compromise food quality, but while they were setting up on the day of the event, I soon realized that it would be much better, space-wise, if the entire buffet was set up outside.

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They worked seamlessly in changing the set up and took everything outside, where the space was perfect for a full buffet. My initial worry about food going bad (if it was kept outside) was taken care of when they told me that all of their equipment and trays were durable in any weather, and won’t compromise the quality of food.

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The guys who came were amazing in both organizing and in serving. They were very experienced and did a flawless job of setting up the entire buffet.

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Since we wanted it to be Ramadan-themed, they even brought little table decor items, which was super thoughtful!

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The Food

There were 4 different areas of the buffet: the salads, the mains, the desserts and the kids buffet. All of the food was incredibly delicious and they carefully prepared plenty to satisfy every kind of palette!

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We wanted Arabic dishes with a bit of a mix, so in addition to traditional regional dishes like harees, ouzi, molokia, biryani, hammour, stuffed vine leaves and mouttabel, we also had exotic pineapple salad, pastas, steaks, mashed potatoes, etc. It truly was the perfect buffet menu for a group of people who like a mix of cuisines.

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I loved the presentation and the chefs at Imperial Catering did an amazing job with making sure all the food looked gorgeous!

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The desserts, including mango & coconut mousse, blueberry cheesecake, aseeda bobar and chocolate mousse were beautifully laid out in single portion-style, which made it really easy for guests to take. Along with the single portion desserts, we also had a traditional kanafeh (after all, what kind of Ramadan celebration is it without kanafeh?!), a lovely mixed fruit platter and a chocolate cake.

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The kids had their own buffet section which was filled with kid (and for some of us, adult) favorites like mini hot dog rolls, fish fingers, chicken nuggets, mini pizzas, spaghetti bolognese and they even made a special fruit salad (aside from the main fruit platter) with kid-friendly bite-sized pieces for the kids!

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For drinks, they put up a spread of delicious traditional Ramadan juices like Vimto, jalab, tamar hind and eran laban.

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Impressions

Our guests absolutely loved it, the quality was prime and the set up was exquisite. It was definitely up to 5-star hotel standards and I loved that they put so much thought into even the decor. They were so good that our guests took their contact info and our neighbors were even asking me questions and for their contact info afterwards (a big purple catering truck attracts attention!). They do events of all sizes, so whether its small gatherings like ours or large weddings and government events, they’re able to handle it all!

If you’re hosting an iftar in this month (whether it be for your business or a personal home catering), Imperial Catering should be at the top of your list.  They’re based in Abu Dhabi, but can cater to events all around the UAE.

If you’re not planning on hosting an iftar this year, try out their luxurious Ramadan tent, Al Majlis in Al Hudayriat Island, Abu Dhabi! It has an 800-person capacity and definitely a tent to check out this month in Abu Dhabi.

To book a catering service, check out their website and call them at +971 888 1110.

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