When you have been in Doha for a few months, particularly over the summer it can feel a little bit like you have been working down a mine without much scope for fresh air or a view. It takes a bit of positive action to change this and you don’t always have to leave Doha entirely.
Situated just off the coast of the city opposite The Pearl is a small sand island called Al Safliya Island. You can just see it from the shore line, and more often than not you can see one or two boats anchored off its shores. Particularly at the moment as we enjoy crisp clear skies, you can see the bamboo shades poking above the sealine.
It’s a little slice of heaven tucked about 3km from the shore, and if you haven’t been you should go as soon as possible. The minor hurdle of crossing the sea is one you will have to work out; take your own boat, hire a Dhow, paddle a surfboard, upgrade to some new friends who own a boat (This should be a general rule for life.)
Just get there, it’s magical.
There is of course the small chance that a group of fat and ugly youths will completely ruin the experience for you and every one else on the beach by driving a collection of unmuffled jet skis as close to your children and the beach as they can, proving that what they lack in brain capacity they make up for in f*ckwittery, (feel free to throw stones as they pass, it’s quite the sport) but you might be lucky and be able to simply enjoy the beautiful view.
For me heading to the island is all about the picnic, loading boats up with cool boxes bristling with delicious food and drink to enjoy with your feet in the water while the kids explore the island is just heavenly. You may have missed my “recipe” series that happens quietly outside of your weekly updates, so here is a little bit of an intro to it – Chilli Beef wraps with Siracha Mayo
This is best fully prepped at home and packed into various tupperware to make you look like a cheffy ninja when you get to the picnic/ BBQ/ Braai/ fire/ Green egg/ tin foil jobby.
Rib Eye steaks – Marinade in chilli flakes and salt with a splash of oil ideally over night – Cook them up till they are a juicy medium rare on the BBQ. Then slice them up into super thin strips.
Wraps – Open the bag
Sririacha mayo – Big scoop of mayo, big squeeze Sriracha Sauce, squeeze of lemon, stir and taste. Make sure its fiery.
Shredded lettuce – Chop it all up at home and bring it in a Tupperware, take the lid off.
Spicy Tomato Salsa – Tomatoes, Chilli, basil, cucumber, chopped up super fine and put in a Tupperware, take the lid off.
Once Steaks are cooked and sliced into thin strips lay it all out on table (or a cool box) and then get people to help themselves.