Sarah Garden25 May 2015 AT 06:48 PM

The Farm

Sampling the camel menu
Sarah Garden25 May 2015 AT 06:48 PM
Views of Yangon
© Paul Thuysbaert Photography
Views of Yangon
Views of Yangon
© Paul Thuysbaert Photography
Views of Yangon

When a café is half an hour’s drive from most Dubai landmarks, yet extremely popular, you know it’s good. Such is the reputation of The Farm in Al Barari Villas – yes you need a car to get there, but yes, it’s worth it.

Surrounded by lush greenery and bright flowers, the tropical colours masterfully disguise the fact that it’s in a desert city. The best part of all the scenery is that The Farm is well-equipped for summer, with two glass rooms complete with air conditioning. Setting-wise, it gets a huge tick.

The chef is currently getting creative with camel, and the menu is packed with dishes featuring the desert beast. Whether you’d like a camel meat burger or ice cream made with camel milk, the team can accommodate. The first question we had was “why?” and The Farm have clearly pre-empted this, as the iPads you order from explain everything. High in protein but half the fat, it's fantastic for those who are watching their weight.

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We were expecting it to smell earthy or taste gamey. We were wrong on both counts. The meat tastes very similar to lamb but without a strong smell, and The Farm’s chef has managed to design dishes to ensure that the particularly dry meat is tender. Unfortunately, the camel milk isn’t quite as successful. With a heavy aftertaste, we probably won’t be replacing our morning latte anytime soon, although some of the ice cream flavours are delicious.

Three dishes to try:

Garlic stir-fried camel and hot Thai basil
There is no way of telling that this dish is made with camel. It’s simply a Thai stir-fry, and a good one at that.

Massaman camel
Marinated camel strips are cooked in Thai cardamom curry with ginger and cashew nuts, giving the meat lots of flavor.

Camel milk ice-cream
Although the milk-based dishes are less appealing, some of the ice-creams are a big hit. Our favourite is the date flavour.

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