Mo Abedin

Dubai, one of the seven emirates of the United Arab Emirates, has long been known for its luxurious high-rises, extravagant lifestyle, and big-brand imports. But, entrepreneur Mo Abedin is giving UAE something that's in short supply - home-grown food! No wonder the UAE community is all praise for Abedin. Here's how he is propagating and retaining local food culture.

Humble beginnings

Abedin is an Emirati who was born in Bangkok and raised by his mother Amena who is a Thai Chef. Ask him what motivated him to popularize UAE's local food scene, and he says, "I grew up watching and working in the kitchen alongside my mother. I developed a heartfelt love for simple, authentic food.

I wanted to share that same love and passion with everyone and also educate them about different types of unique dishes from around the world and also the amazingly talented people behind them.

Abedin also credits his mother with supporting him all the way. This mama's boy turned his mama's passion and expertise into a restaurant in Dubai! It goes by the name 'Sticky Rice' which Abedin runs jointly with his mother. Authentic food lovers flock in large numbers to this cute little joint in Jumeirah Village Circle in Dubai.

Abedin talks about the importance of creativity, especially when it comes to traditional food while retaining its true authentic flavors. That's what helped entrepreneur Mo Abedin turn the attention of modern-day foodies towards trying new dishes and also sparking curiosity in others to venture out to learn about different cuisines from around the world.

Growing up in a creative environment, Abedin developed a strong affection for food at a tender age. Talking about what makes his food so locally authentic, he says, "I pay attention to ingredients and methodology that play a part in retaining authentic flavors, and I never compromise on them. Everything that we make is with the hand, no shortcuts. For example, our popular chili paste is made with hand-roasted spices. We use fresh lemongrass instead of its widely used substitute - the dry lemongrass, which tastes rather horrible."

For Mo Abedin, it works out to be a lot pricier that way, but it's nothing compared to the priceless smiles on his customers' faces once they've tasted Abedin's food.