Glavkosmos (part of Roscosmos) in collaboration with Space Food Laboratory and the Institute of Biomedical Problems of the Russian Academy of Sciences are realizing the initiative of Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Center to include national dishes as a Guest Set for the first UAE astronaut now preparing to fly to the ISS this September.
The guest food will consist of three traditional UAE dishes: Balaleet (the main ingredient is vermicelli with egg omelette), Saloona (the main ingredient is lamb), and Madhrooba (the main ingredient is chicken).
The Guest Set will be presented as canned food in aluminum cans (Balaleet and Saloona) and a tube (Madruba). The Set does not require any special devices for cooking aboard and will be ready-to-eat right after the package is opened.
Traditionally, food for cosmonauts is made from eco products of the highest quality, and the dish itself is as much pre-cooked as possible and usually requires only heating in an electric heater or adding hot/ cold water. Products must maintain the initial food quality and be safe for consumption when stored in the environment with uncontrolled temperature and humidity.
As the first Emirati astronaut to be aboard ISS, will not be staying for a long duration at the ISS, the Guest Set will not substitute his adequate diet. The purpose of the Set is to demonstrate the characteristics of national dishes to the ISS cosmonauts.
Roscosmos and Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Center signed the contract for training to and organization of the flight to the ISS of the first UAE astronaut in 2018. Two candidates – Hazzaa AlMansoori and Sultan AlNeyadi – form the first batch of the UAE Astronaut Programme, and one of them will fly to the ISS in September 2019.