When we teamed up with new online grocery store MyQ&C for a family cooking masterclass recently, we put their superb product range to the test with Dubai-based food blogger Ahlam Altamare from Straight Up Bananas, who set out to create a range of healthy and nutritious recipes perfect for the Holy Month. Here, we find out more about the company, named for its aim to provide quality and convenience to Dubai’s busy families, and share one of Ahlam’s specially created recipes to inspire you at home.

How did the creation of MyQ&C come about?

MyQ&C was created because we wanted to increase accessibility to healthy foods. Our goal was to bypass the daily obstacles, like busy working hours or difficulties in transportation to and from grocery stores, that can prevent you and your family from consuming a healthy and balanced diet. We created a mechanism by which you can shop for high quality gourmet foods from the convenience of your smartphone or computer, bringing the fields and orchards directly to your doorstep.

What does the name stand for and why did you choose it?

MyQ&C stands for ‘My Quality & Convenience’ and it’s a name that perfectly captures what we stand for. When it comes to quality, we aren’t a typical online grocer because we only carry the highest standard gourmet foods. And when it comes to convenience, we deliver our carefully handpicked grocery essentials from all around the world directly to your doorstep.

Tell us a little about the ethos behind the company.

We strongly believe in the importance of nutrition on health and, for that reason, MyQ&C was created to ensure that your access to healthy foods is unlimited and not restricted by how busy your life is. Until MyQ&C launched, you would have had to travel to various specialist stores to be able to get the gourmet foods and drinks you wanted here. We have eliminated this gap by making it available and accessible 24/7 and the reception since we launched in April has been astounding.

How many of your brands are unique or new to market here, and how did you go about selecting your products?

We carefully choose products that are of high quality, such as organic certified foods and, while typical grocery chain stores will carry a wide assortment of fruits and vegetables throughout the year, at MyQ&C we try to focus our supply of available products to foods that are in season. Not only do seasonal foods tend to be more abundant and affordable, more importantly, they are also known to be fresher and more flavourful.

Health and wellbeing is becoming such a huge focus locally. Has that influenced your approach?

Absolutely. Because we strongly believe in the importance of nutrition on health, MyQ&C has made sure that our list of available products includes a range of organic groceries and gluten-free goods.

What did you think of the recipes Ahlam created with your range?

MyQ&C partnered with Ahlam for the live cooking show because our nutrition goals are in perfect synergy. Ahlam has modified traditional recipes to include healthier ingredients using MyQ&C products, and this partnership has truly highlighted that healthy eating doesn’t have to be bland or boring. All you need is high-quality products and a willingness to substitute one or two ingredients with healthier options.

Ahlam’s healthy chocolate pudding

Satisfying enough for any sweet tooth, and yet packed full of the nutrients you need throughout Ramadan, this vegan pudding works just as well in the morning as it does at dessert…

Ingredients:

1 avocado

1 banana

4 tbsp cocoa powder

3 tbsp maple syrup or honey

3 tbsp coconut oil

A pinch of sea salt

Method:

1) Throw all of your ingredients into a food processor and blend until smooth. You could also make it in a deep bowl using a hand-blender. 2) Once smooth, transfer to serving bowls and chill until needed. 3) Serve as it is, or top with your favourite nuts, seeds or fruits for a nutritious end to your iftar or a great pre-sunrise nutrition boost.

For additional recipes from Ahlam, or to order your Ramadan groceries, call (04) 3925657 or visit MyQandC.com