Our favourite season is upon us, and this year, autumn comes with an added bonus in the arrival of Marks & Spencer’s first dedicated food hall and café in the Middle East. As the first brand ever to introduce a 100 per cent Fairtrade promise in its tea and coffee range, and with an ethos that supports independent farmers and small-scale artisan producers the world over, M&S has long been a go to for ethical shoppers.  To mark its arrival, the M&S team has dived into the store’s stock to bring you some autumn inspiration, whether you’re looking to host a warm weather afternoon tea or simply seeking some cooling treats to make a day in the garden that little bit special…

Did you know?

All Marks & Spencer cakes are made by expert bakers to traditional recipes, using the finest ingredients, such as free-range eggs, perfect to enjoy with the brand’s renowned Fairtrade
teas and coffees.

AFTERNOON TEA

Try a refreshing twist on the traditional and serve a selection of favourite cakes with perfectly paired iced fruity teas and a revitalising coffee spritzer

RICH INDULGENCE

If coffee and cake is your thing, try M&S Fairtrade Colombian 100% Arabica Coffee (Dhs26) with a slice of rich, frosted, Chocolate Fudge Cake (Dhs27). Or for a warm weather update, why not turn your coffee into a spritzer? Simply brew your coffee, cool, then mix with sparkling water and a dash of sugar, for a refreshing blend inspired by the cold-brew
coffee trend. Pour over ice and garnish with a cherry or curl of lemon zest.

FRUITY TWIST

Your tea wouldn’t be complete without a slice of Victoria Sandwich Cake (Dhs27). This classic cake features an all-butter sponge filled with strawberry jam and Madagascan vanilla buttercream. The sweet jam works well with invigorating Apple and Mint Iced Tea (Dhs12), decorated with slices of apple and a sprig of mint for
a stylish touch.

SPICE SURPRISE

Lightly spiced with cinnamon and nutmeg, and mixed with juicy raisins and crushed pineapple, M&S’ Carrot Cake (Dhs27) is topped with a cream cheese frosting and a light dusting of cinnamon, perfect with homemade iced tea.

SAVOURY SCONES

Who says afternoon tea has to be sweet? For the more savoury-toothed among your guests, why not slice open some M&S Cheese Scones (Dhs15) and swap the usual jam and cream for a fruity chutney and crescents of green apple, or sundried tomatoes and slices of feta.

Why not try…

Serve the granita with your favourite fresh fruits – mango and kiwi go well with mandarin – for a colourful and cooling dessert

COOLING TREATS

Turn an afternoon in the garden into a special treat with fruity coolers and lollies perfect for kids and grown-ups alike.

TROPICAL COOLERS

Granita looks great in a tall glass. Dissolve 100g sugar in 100ml warm water. Cool, then mix with 2 cans of Sparkling Mandarin (Dhs12) and pour into a deep, freezer-proof dish. Freeze for 30 minutes, then remove from the freezer and rake with a fork. Return to the freezer. Repeat every 30 minutes, until it is frozen,
with a slushy – but not watery – texture.

CITRUS LOLLIES

Make refreshing ice lollies by dissolving 100g sugar in 100ml warm water. Leave to cool, then add a bottle of Lemon and Rose Pressé (Dhs18) or two cans of Sparkling Grape, Sicilian
Lemon and Grapefruit (Dhs18). Pour into lolly moulds containing sliced strawberry or lemon, add a lolly stick and freeze overnight.

Marks & Spencer Food Hall & Café, Unit A4, Marina Walk, Dubai, Sun to Wed 8am to 10pm, Thur to Sat 8am to midnight. Tel: (04) 2441614. Metro: Damac Properties. marksandspencer.me.com

Marks & Spencer chilled food is also available at Ibn Battuta, Dubai Festival City and Mall of the Emirates.