Hazzaa AlMansoori, the UAE's first astronaut to travel to the International Space Station next month, will host a traditional Emirati food night.
The Mohammed bin Rashid Space Centre (MBRSC) has announced that Hazzaa AlMansoori, the UAE’s first astronaut to travel to the International Space Station next month, will host a traditional Emirati food night at the ISS.
AlMansoori will be dressed in the traditional Emirati clothes, and will offer his fellow astronauts three Emirati foods - madrooba, saloona, and balaleet, a statement said.
The event will be the first of its kind, with Gulf inspired cuisine being tasted in a non-gravitational environment, state news agency WAM reported.
AlMansoori, the UAE's main astronaut travelling to the ISS, and Sultan AlNeyadi, the UAE’s back-up astronaut, have spent up to two hours daily for a week to taste about 200 different types of halal food and evaluate each.
The Russian Space Food Laboratory company is responsible for preparing these meals for space.
"I’m honoured to be the first astronaut to host an Emirati night on board the ISS to promote the Emirati culture, which I am proud to belong to, and share some appetizing Emirati food like madrooba, saloona, and balaleet, which I’m sure they will like," said AlMansoori.
AlNeyadi added that the menu on the ISS includes appetisers such as soups and cheese, and the main course includes fish, chicken or beef, in addition to desserts and drinks such as tea and juices.
Meals prepared for space are usually placed in the form of paste in tubes, which should be directly consumed and cannot be heated, or in the form of canned food containing food in a solid or dried form, where water can be added to it and it can be heated in special equipment for five to seven minutes.
UAE Astronaut Programme is oversees the MBRSC, which is part of the UAE National Space Programme, and aims to prepare the first Emirati astronaut corps to participate in global space exploration missions.