Recent Work: Gourmet Burger Kitchen

I loved working on this project with my team. Aliaa my fabulous food stylist used her unending energy and fabulous eye to grill up these fabulous burgers for me to shoot. Selva worked his magic with problem solving and his indefatigable attitude. Together we produced the following images for Gourmet Burger Kitchen Dubai who have just launched their new menu. I’ve also included some fun behind the scenes shots. I apologise in advance for drool on keyboards.

blue cheese chicken burger the grateful photographer

Habanero Burger The Grateful Photographer

Burger Amelia Johnson Photography

Burger 2 Amelia Johnson Photography

Sweet Potato Fries Amelia Johnson Photography

Texas BBQ Burger Amelia Johnson Photography

Aliaa styling our first burger:

amelia johnson food photographer dubai

behind the scenes food stylist amelia johnson photography

.Behind the scenes photoshoot amelia johnson photographyI

If you’re now fasmished there are branches of GBK in the Marina and DIFC, both in Dubai.

Tastes-Good-With-Everything Peach Salsa

Amelia Johnson Photography Peach SalsaToday we’re going to talk peaches, juicy fresh peaches. Did you know that here in Dubai we get most of our summer fruit from Europe, and our winter fruit from the Southern Hemisphere*. For the first time since moving here 5 years ago I’ve found tasty peaches. I’m so excited! They’re South African and the only disappointment is that when you buy them, they’re hard. So I leave them next to a banana to ripen and a day later? They’re all ripe. What was I supposed to do with 8 ripe peaches?

I looked through some American blogs and found plenty of tasty peach recipes, but none of them were quite what I wanted. Peach cobbler, peach pie, peach crumble, peach crisp and peach ice cream. But none of them tempted me. Then I remembered an amazing peach salsa I had served with pork loin in peach country- Georgia. What I wanted to do was remake that food memory. I found a couple of different recipes and mixed ’em up. I am SUPER pleased with the results. My husband had this with eggs for breakfast this morning and his first reaction was ‘wow’.

*  I do eat/cook local as far as possible, but living in the desert our produce is limited. Apologies to my British readers for whom peaches are totally, completely and utterly out of season right now.


Tastes-Good-With-Everything Peach Salsa


6 ripe peaches

3 medium tomatoes

1/2 chilli

1 red pepper

1/4 red onion

1 tbsp fresh mint finely chopped

1 lime

1/4 tsp chili powder

1 tbsp muscavado brown sugar

salt and pepper to taste


Dice the peaches, tomato, onion and chilli as finely as possible. Mix together with the fresh chilli. Add in the juice of the lime, chilli, sugar and salt and pepper to taste.

Mix together and store in a sterilized jar. This tastes best after it’s had at least a couple of hours for the flavours to marinate.

Store in the fridge.


Cabernet Burgers AKA the Best Burgers In the Whole World Ever.

My friends Lionel and Kat invited me for a bbq. Now this is not an invitation to turn down. Lionel is renowned for his gourmet  food and I was pretty sure we weren’t going to be eating horsemeat burgers and gritty sausages. However I have to say Lionel completely outdid himself.

(You can tell by the hat he’s serious about this whole bbq thing right?)


He made Cabernet Sauvignon burgers, which are hands down the best burgers I have ever eaten.

Go! Now! Light your barbecue!

Three ingredients. Cabernet Sauvignon. Brown Sugar. Minced Beef.

I’ll be making these for every single bbq I’m invited to this winter, starting with our family reunion in Cyprus next weekend. My friends and family are going to LOVE these.

Unfortunately I didn’t realise how delicious these were going to be and didn’t take enough photos of them before they were devoured. He also made some tasty bbq chicken legs and wings. I don’t remember there being any salad. Just meat. 🙂ImageImageImageImage


500ml Cabernet Sauvignon

1 tbsp brown sugar

700g 80% lean mince beef

salt and pepper to taste


1. Make the glaze. In a heavy saucepan over a medium heat mix the wine and sugar. Cook until reduced to approx 125ml. Set aside to cool.

2. Combine the beef with 3/4 of the cooled glaze and salt and pepper. Make 4 equal patties of approx 3/4 inch thick.

3. Grill the patties over a direct high heat, with the bbq lid closed, for 8-10 minutes. Whilst cooking brush with the glaze every couple of minutes.

Optional– add a slice of cheddar to each burger for a minute before removing from the heat. 

Serve with grilled tomatoes and focaccia buns.

Recipe adapted from Weber-