The flavourful cooking of Morocco enjoys a tradition of cuisine rich in spices. Women in the royal cities of Morocco have made cooking an art and a centre of social and community life. Moroccans will be quick to point out that the food found in homes is much better than that available in restaurants. Hosting here also far outshines many parts of the world. A meal would often start with a vast array of delicious dipping salads, from eggplant to green pepper to tomato and onion based salads. This is accompanied by a mouth-watering tagine, a stew type dish characterized by meat, chicken or fish covered by any number of vegetables, sitting in a flavourful spicy sauce. This is eaten by dipping bread, and the visitor will find this an absolutely delightful culinary experience.
Then, just as you are feeling thoroughly stuffed, Moroccans like to display their hospitality and surprise you with another full meal, just as irresistible as the first. The meal ends with a selection of fresh fruit, to pass it down. With constant encouragements to keep eating, that are considered polite in this culture, the guest is guaranteed to leave without needing a meal for another week. In addition to tagine, some other traditional meals include couscous and basteeya. Couscous is steamed semolina grains, traditionally covered with seven vegetables (often onions, pumpkin, zucchini, turnips, chili peppers, carrots and tomatoes) and, once again, a yummy sauce. This is traditionally served on Fridays and usually eaten either with spoons or hands. Basteeya is a triple layer sweet and savoury pastry, with shredded chicken, eggs, lemony onion sauce, and sweetened almonds enclosed in tissue-thin pastry, and sprinkled with a layer of sugar and cinnamon. This type of main meal is often served at lunch (around 2 or 2:30pm ). A nice meal for dinner (anywhere from 8pm to midnight ) is the traditional soup harira. This tomato-based soup is filled with chickpeas and lentils, but it is the incredible blend of herbs and spices that make it so addictive. Harira is also the traditional soup to break the fast each day during the Muslim month of Ramadan. This is often accompanied by other Moroccan treats such as malawi, harsha, bissara, and dates to name a few. Moroccan mint tea is another sweet treat to enjoy as you sample all the great tastes offered in front of you.
Check out our blog posts about Moroccan food:
They say these are the best Moroccan foods…
5 Foods to Try in Morocco
And our recipes:
Beef with Prune Tagine