Sharjah International Book Fair welcomes renowned cooks

The 30th Sharjah International Book Fair is playing host to a line-up of some of the world’s finest chefs and cookery writers.

Robert Arbor opened the first location of his Le Gamin Cafe in Soho, New York, in 1992. Since then, simple, authentic French classics served in a style has made him synonymous with casual dining. Originally from France, he has appeared on international and national TV, is a frequent spokesperson for fine food products and a bestselling cookbook author. Joie De Vivre breaks down the jene sais quoi of uncomplicated yet pleasurable French living.

Kimiko Barber was born in Kobe, Japan and arrived in England in 1972 after winning a scholarship to attend an English school. After attending university and a successful career in international investment banking both in the City of London and later in Tokyo, a chance visit to Books for Cooks in Notting Hill changed her focus to cooking, teaching and later food writing and broadcasting. Kimiko teaches Japanese cooking at a number of cookery schools and contributes regularly to the Weekend Financial Times on its food and wine and travel section.

Sophie Grey was born in Swindon to Polish exiled parents and is a former model. In 1990, a friend asked her to cater a party for a friend of hers. The friend turned out to be Simon Cowell. Sophie went on to set up Model Catering and has been feeding the film, music and property industries ever since. Lucy set up Crazy Baker in March 2009, delivering to restaurants and cafés throughout the west London area. Realising that not only did people want to buy really good bread and cakes they also wanted to learn how to make them, she started writing down her recipes, and her Crazy Baker cookery book was published in March 2011.

Anissa Helou (was born, the daughter of a Syrian father and a Lebanese mother, in Beirut and educated there at a French convent school. Aged 21, she moved to London study interior design and in Sotheby’s training course, the history of art. After a highly successful career in antiques , during a stint as advisor to the Kuwait royal family, Anissa turned her attentions to sharing the culinary delights of the East. Anissa has always taken a strong interest in the food of the Levant. She had already written two books about it – Lebanese Cuisine, the first comprehensive collection in the English language (1994) and Street Café Morocco, a fascinating introduction to the subtle flavours of the cuisine of that country. Both books achieved considerable acclaim, and her works continue to build upon this success. Anissa is an experienced broadcaster on radio and television and writes regularly for the Weekend Financial Times.

Suzanne Husseini hosted one of the most popular Arabic cooking shows in the Middle East. She frequently conducts live cooking demonstrations and has been a featured presenter at major food events such as Taste of Dubai, Abu Dhabi International Book Fair, Gourmand’s Paris Cook Book Fair and Frankfurt Book Fair. Suzanne has been a teacher and a restaurant manager, and combines her skills and passion for food in order to conduct her very popular cooking classes to those eager to unlock the mysteries of Middle Eastern dishes. She lived in Canada and Saudi Arabia. She currently lives in Dubai with her husband Ahmed and their three children.

Rose Prince is a food writer, author and cook Her writing career did not start until her mid thirties, previously she had worked as a chef and the cook in the Notting Hill specialist bookshop, Books for Cooks with Clarissa Dickson Wright. She was also the in-house cook at The Spectator magazine for seven years. She has several weekly columns and is a regular broadcaster. She was the winner of a Glenfiddich award in 2001 and in 2009 was named by Vogue magazine as one of the most inspirational women in Britain.

Amy Riolo is an internationally recognized expert known for fusing the worlds of cuisine, culture, and history in her work. An award – winning author, popular lecturer, food historian, food writer, culinary consultant, and cooking instructor, she was dubbed the “Cook to the Kings” by a Cairo newspaper in 2008. Amy’s first book, Arabian Delights; Recipes & Princely Entertaining Ideas from the Arabian Peninsula was chosen as one of the “16 Volumes Worth Staining” by the Washington Post. Her second book Nile Style; Egyptian Cuisine and Culture won the World Gourmand Award for “Best Arab Cuisine Book” in the United States in 2009. Her most recent book The Mediterranean Diabetes Cookbook was released in March 2010 and has won the 2011 Nautilus Book Award.