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Al Nassma: Camel Milk Chocolate

Strolling past the Arabic Souk section in the Mall of the Emirates, the rich dark colours of a central stand caught my eye. Al Nassma, the world’s first quality camel milk chocolate was on display behind the sparkle of a long glass counter. I had heard of the world’s first camel milk chocolate before my visit to Dubai and out of gourmand curiosity, I was very eager to explore the range on offer.

Al Nassma stand in Mall of the Emirates

Al Nassma means a drifting breeze in Arabic, a welcome and gentle wind bringing cool respite from the heat of the desert. Although the name has little to do with chocolate, it embodies one of the ubiquitous symbols of Dubai, the camel. According to Al Nassma’s website, camel milk is rich in vitamins and minerals and claims to have healing qualities. It contains up to five times more vitamin C than dairy milk, less lactose and more insulin, which makes it a good alternative for the lactose intolerant and diabetics.

Al Nassma chocolate bars

On approaching the stand, the sales assistant must have noted my excitement. He offered us a generous tasting, consisting of every variety available. Pieces of chocolate bars were presented, Camel Milk Chocolate with Whole Milk, with Spices Arabia, the Bittersweet variety with 70% cocoa, those with dates and Macadamia Nut and Orange Zest.

I wondered what camel milk would taste. Was it richer and creamier than cow milk? Did it have a distinctive taste? Was what I was about to sample an acquired taste? I was about to take the first bite with anticipation then I remembered that I was not about to taste camel milk per se but the chocolate made with it.

Al Nassma camel chocolate bars

The whole milk chocolate variety, which formed the barometer of taste for me, was a pleasant and mild taste, not too milky or too rich. The chocolate was smooth and released more of it flavour as it melted in my mouth. I particularly liked the delicate spices of Arabia pieces, mild enough not to overpower the taste of the chocolate yet distinctive enough to enjoy.

Al Nassma camel chocolate pralines

Next, he offered us the Pralines range, Camel Milk Chocolates with Arabic Coffee Cream, Pistachio Marzipan and Hazelnut Nougat. I love pistachios and I’m very partial to marzipan but the hazelnut nougat was a close contender. I could not pick a favourite.

Al Nassma single Camel chocolate

We were presented with a plate with bite-sized camels that looked too cute to eat. These came in an elegant Camel Caravan, a wooden gift box housing 18 milk chocolate camels with a creamy macadamia nut and honey centre, a filling oozing with flavour. One bite of the sensual creamy centre and I was converted. These chocolates were also available as a single souvenir gift box but who would want to argue over who eats the one camel back home?

Al Nassma hollow camel chocolate figures

Hollow figures of whole milk chocolate in two sizes were on display, much like Easter eggs. The one humped camel is available in two sizes, 130 grams and 730 grams.

Al Nassma - one hump or two

Our camel milk chocolate tasting concluded with a purchase beautifully packaged in a deep chocolate-coloured Al Nassma glossy shopping bag. We just had to take the taste of Arabia back home. The Camel Caravan made a long journey to Australia via Europe with two bars of the Arabia variety for company.

Al Nassma Camel Caravan box

Now I am faced with a dilemma. I am tempted to indulge my taste buds in that macadamia but and honey camel but that Caravan looks too cute to eat.

Al Nassma Camel Caravan

Would you eat camel milk chocolate?

Al Nassma
United Arab Emirates

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About the author

Corinne Mossati

Corinne Mossati is a drinks writer, author of GROW YOUR OWN COCKTAIL GARDEN, SHRUBS & BOTANICAL SODAS and founder/editor of Gourmantic, Cocktails & Bars and The Gourmantic Garden. She has been writing extensively about spirits, cocktails, bars and cocktail gardening in more recent years. She is a spirits and cocktail competition judge, Icons of Whisky Australia nominee, contributor to Diageo Bar Academy, cocktail developer and is named in Australian Bartender Magazine's Top 100 Most Influential List. Her cocktail garden was featured on ABC TV’s Gardening Australia and has won several awards. She is a contributor to Real World Gardener radio program and is featured in several publications including Pip Magazine, Organic Gardener, Australian Bartender and Breathe (UK). Read the full bio here.