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Monday, July 17, 2006

Scrumptious dates are made of these!

Are you fond of dates - that is the eating kind? Well, then Bateel is where you should head if you want to enjoy a lavish assortment of premium quality dates, date truffles, cookies, pastries, biscuits, nutritious date bars and delightful date jams.

And there's more - you could wash it all down with some date champagne. These special dates are filled with lime and sugarcane juice or alternatively filled with almonds and cashew nuts.

Bateel is a company based in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, which is one of the world’s main producers and exporters of dates and has franchises worldwide. The company takes its name from an Arabic word 'bateel' which refers to the offshoot from the date palm plant. The date palm tree is also known as the ‘tree of life’ and recognised as a national treasure in the UAE.

The Bateel farm produces 22 types of dates, which go through a rigorous ripening and sterilisation process before being displayed in temperature controlled boutiques. Besides dates, Bateel has developed many products related and derived from the fruit, including sparkling juice, nectar or ‘dhibs’ and date chocolates as well as gourmet chocolates.

The company also commissions French and Belgian chefs to develop new products, especially for Bateel’s date chocolate line. Each type of date chocolate (they have at least 14 varieties to date) is made up of at least four layers - for example, a fresh date wrapped in praline, coated with chocolate, and finally covered with powdered cocoa.

In India, this luxury brand is available at CR2 at Nariman Point in Mumbai. Here you will find around 11 types of cookies and about 25 types of dates and a box of chocolates will set you back only by a couple of thousand rupees. But that's peanuts, when you are confronted with such a mouthwatering feast for the tastebuds!

Written for www.moneycontrol.com

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