Warm Up to Baking: A Dubai Winter Hobby for the Holidays

Warm Up to Baking: A Dubai Winter Hobby for the Holidays

Baking is a sweet adventure, filled with floury escapades and delicious discoveries. It's that magical journey where you transform basic every day (some not-so-everyday, if you're fancy) ingredients into mouthwatering masterpieces, filling your home with calming, soothing aromas, and your heart with pure delight.

Picture this: Outside, the city air is crisp and cool, and the sky is a beautiful blue with fluffy clouds. Inside your cozy kitchen, the oven radiates warmth and fills the air with tantalizing scents. You reach into the oven, and as you pull out that tray of cookies, an irresistible whiff of happiness envelops your senses. The cookies are perfectly golden, their edges slightly crispy, and the centers remain delightfully gooey. You can't resist grabbing one, and as you take that first bite, the flavors explode into a sweet and slightly salty amalgamation, that perfectly balances chewiness and melt-in-your-mouth goodness. It's not just a cookie; it's a moment of pure indulgence, a small celebration of life's simple pleasures.

And that freshly baked, fragrant loaf of bread? As you slice into it, a comforting cloud of warmth and homey nostalgia fills the air. The crust crackles softly, revealing the soft, pillowy interior with a slightly nutty aroma. You slather on a bit of butter, and each bite is a reminder of the time and care you put into creating this edible masterpiece. It's a sensory experience like no other, a delicious journey of both skill and joy that makes baking truly special.

Baking during winter, especially throughout the festive holidays, is a hobby that entices with tempting charm. But it's not just about the ambiance; it's about creating lasting memories with loved ones. Baking brings people together as they gather around to mix, stir, and decorate. It's an activity that transcends generations, where grandparents share secret family recipes with wide-eyed children, and friends bond over shared triumphs - and occasional mishaps.

Intrigued? Let's make baking a breeze with this article. We'll check out some workshops and share a few recipes to help you turn it into a lifelong hobby, perfect for your free time.



Learn how to bake delicious pastries with a Halloween twist, bringing iconic figures like Frankenstein and mummies to life through creative decorations inspired by the spooky festive season. The class offers hands-on experience and expert guidance in a group setting. All materials related to the class will be provided.

When: Saturday, 21st October | 10:30am - 12:30 pm

Cost: AED 450

What you will learn:

  • Pumpkin, sage and parmesan challah
  • Herb-roasted butternut squash focaccia
  • Apple butter cinnamon swirl and cinnamon coffee sticky buns

Period: 2 hours class

Location: Nakheel Mall - Inside Depachika Food Hall, The Palm Jumeirah


Whether you're looking to expand your baking skills or simply have a preference for buttery, flaky tarts over cakes, this private cooking class is the perfect choice. Get ready to roll up your sleeves in the kitchen, as you'll be provided with an apron and all the necessary utensils.

When: Flexible

Cost: AED 550

What you will learn:

Two delectable tarts with any of these filling options:

  • Lemon apple
  • Raspberry
  • Strawberry

Period: 2 hours private class

Location: DAMAC Lake View, Lake Level, Cluster B, Jumeirah Lakes Towers - JLT

In this private class, you will master the art of crafting three distinct cookie varieties and receive detailed recipes for each. Furthermore, you'll have the chance to explore creative icing techniques for sugar cookies. Your journey will begin with expert guidance on creating the perfect cookie dough, ensuring you incorporate the right ingredients to achieve the ideal texture and flavor.

When: Flexible | 12:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Cost: AED 1140

What you will learn:

  • Sugar cookies
  • Royal icing and decorations
  • Chocolate chip cookies
  • Oatmeal raisin cookies

Period: 5 hours private class ( 2 sessions x 2.5 hours)

Location: Shop #5 - Ali Mohammed Belharif Building, Near Haji Ali Restaurant, Opposite Families Supermarket, Oud Metha


Unleash your inner baker with this sweets baking course, designed to help you cultivate hands-on baking skills and master the art of baking with the right techniques. Their team of experts will guide you through the process, sharing their valuable tips and tricks as you confidently conquer three mouthwatering recipes.

When: Saturday, 16th December | 2:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Cost: AED 500

What you will learn:

  • Banana Bread
  • Torta Tres Leches
  • French Madeleines

Period: 3 hours

Location: Unit 16, Promenade Level, Cluster I, Jumeirah Lakes Towers - JLT


In this class, you will receive hands-on guidance on crafting and baking soft, chewy whole-grain cookies that are both delicious and nutritious. Valuable storage and baking tips, along with user-friendly recipe cards, will be shared. Plus, you will also get to take home the delectable homemade treats you made.

When: Flexible | 10:00 am - 1:00 pm

Cost: AED 325

What you will learn:

  • Famous Italian Almond Cookies
  • Wholegrain Chocolate Chip Cookies
  • Cinnamon Oatmeal Cookies
  • Pistachio Cranberry Cookies
  • Coconut Macaroons

Period: 3 hours

Location: Shamal Terraces 2, District 14, Street 7, Jumeirah Village Circle - JVC


Lemon-Ginger Bundt Cake

By Martha Stewart Test Kitchen

Infused with the bright zest of fresh lemon and the delightful warmth of crystallized ginger, this Bundt cake boasts a buttery, dense texture that's simply irresistible. To add a finishing touch of sweetness, dust it with a light sprinkling of confectioners' sugar.

Prep Time: 20 mins

Total Time: 1 hr 20 mins



  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for pan
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled), plus more for the pan
  • 2 tablespoons finely grated lemon zest and ⅓ cup fresh lemon juice (from 2 lemons)
  • ⅓ cup minced crystallized ginger
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 ½ cups granulated sugar
  • 6 large eggs
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • Confectioners' sugar, for dusting


  • Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and prepare a standard 12-cup bundt pan by greasing it with butter and dusting it with flour.
  • In a medium-sized bowl, combine the flour, lemon zest, ginger, baking soda, and salt. Set this mixture aside.
  • With an electric mixer, beat the butter and granulated sugar on medium-high speed until the mixture becomes light and fluffy, which should take about 4 to 5 minutes.
  • Add the eggs one at a time, making sure to beat well after each addition, and mix in the lemon juice.
  • With the mixer on low speed, add the flour mixture in three parts and the sour cream in two parts, starting and ending with the flour mixture. Mix only until everything is well incorporated, being careful not to overmix.
  • Spoon the batter into the prepared pan and level the top using a rubber spatula. Tap the pan firmly on a work surface to even out the batter.
  • Bake the cake for approximately 55 to 60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. If the cake begins to brown too quickly, you can loosely tent it with aluminum foil.
  • Allow the cake to cool in the pan for 30 minutes, then turn it out onto a rack to cool completely. If you need to store it, wrap it in plastic and keep it at room temperature for up to three days. Just before serving, dust it with confectioners' sugar.

Pecan Snowflake Cookies

By Taylor Murray

They are a delightful twist on traditional Christmas sugar cookies. Experiment with different sizes of snowflake cutters to enhance the visual charm of these already stunning cookies.

Total Time: 2 hrs 45 mins

Servings: 3 dozens


  • 1 cup pecans
  • 1 cup confectioners' sugar, divided
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted cold butter, cut into small pieces
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour, spooned and leveled, plus more for working
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon


  • Pulse pecans and 3/4 cup sugar in a food processor until finely ground, about 10-12 times.
  • Add butter and vanilla, then pulse until smooth, approximately 14-16 times.
  • Incorporate flour, salt, and cinnamon into the mixture, and process until well combined, about 15-20 seconds.
  • Roll the dough between parchment paper to achieve a 1/4-inch thickness, then chill it until firm, for about 30 minutes or up to 2 days.
  • Preheat the oven to 350°F and prepare two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  • Using a snowflake-shaped cookie cutter coated with flour, cut out cookies and place them on the prepared baking sheets, leaving about 1 1/2 inches of space between each.
  • Bake until the edges are lightly golden brown, which should take 7 to 10 minutes.
  • Allow the cookies to cool on the baking sheets placed on wire racks.
  • Finish by dusting the cookies with the remaining 1/4 cup of confectioners' sugar.

Cinnamon buns

By Olive Magazine

Bake and savor them immediately or keep them for a leisurely weekend breakfast—just ensure they're enjoyed warm from the oven.

Total Time: 50 mins

Servings: 10


  • plain flour, for dusting
  • puff pastry, 500g block
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 75g golden caster sugar
  • 1 1/2 tbsp ground cinnamon


  • Lightly dust a work surface with flour, then roll out the pastry into a 50cm x 50cm square, brushing it with beaten egg.
  • Combine sugar and ground cinnamon in a small bowl, then sprinkle the mixture over the pastry.
  • Fold the pastry in half towards you, pinching the edges to seal it.
  • Roll out the pastry again to form a 40cm x 50cm rectangle, then cut it into 10 (5 cm wide) strips.
  • Take a strip, twist it into a corkscrew shape, and wrap it around itself to create a flat, twisted spiral.
  • Tuck the end underneath the pastry, squeezing it to stick. Repeat this process with the remaining strips.
  • At this point, you can freeze the pastries on a baking tray, and then transfer them to freezer bags once frozen.
  • When ready to cook, fully defrost the pastries in the fridge overnight.
  • Preheat the oven to 200°C (fan 180°C/gas 6). Place the pastries on a baking paper-lined tray and glaze them with more beaten egg.
  • Bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes or until they turn golden and are cooked through. Allow them to cool slightly on a wire rack before enjoying them while still warm.

So, this winter, gather your ingredients, preheat the oven, and let the aroma of freshly baked delights fill your home, making cherished memories one recipe at a time. Warm up to baking, and let the holiday spirit infuse every delectable bite. Happy baking!

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