Gastronomy tourism: Morocco – the country of a thousand tastes
Morocco is one of the most beautiful and colorful countries in North Africa. There are endless sands of the Sahara, green reserves, snowy peaks, flowering meadows, crystal waterfalls, mysterious caves and golden beaches.
Historically, Morocco is located at the crossroads of world trade routes. Formed under the influence of different cultures, the cuisine of this country today is a combination of all kinds of products. But the main feature of the traditional Moroccan cuisine is spices. Moroccans spice up their dishes with a variety of spices and aromatic herbs, achieving a distinctive taste.
Moroccans are very fond of a good and hearty meal. So much so that there is even a saying “All people eat to live, but the Moroccans live to eat. At mealtimes, the Moroccan table is full of dishes. The meal usually begins with appetizers, mezes. Vegetable salads dressed with a mixture of herbs and vegetable oil are served on small plates with spicy khobs bread. The most popular Moroccan salad is composed of cooked potatoes, green peppers, tomatoes, cucumbers, and olives.
. But in Morocco you can also try original salads, such as crab meat with oranges or eggplant with octopus and citrus.
In Moroccan restaurants you will find an almost endless supply of meat dishes. Meat is prepared in thousands of different ways, and fish dishes are very diverse. Thanks to the huge range of spices and herbs, the Moroccans cook even ordinary eggs in a special way.
One of the most exquisite second dishes of Moroccan cuisine is pastilla, a puff pastry with chicken meat, eggs, onions, herbs and nuts. At any meal, tajine, a meat stew with vegetables, is a must. As everywhere else in North Africa, couscous is the head of everything here. In Morocco it has more than a hundred variations. Couscous is a wheat porridge, on top of which stewed meat and vegetables are placed. It is prepared with vegetables, peas, nuts, dried fruits and spices. It is usually eaten by hand or with utensils from the same utensil.
Fish and seafood are abundant in Morocco. The kingdom has about 3,000 kilometers of sea coast, it is the main supplier of fish and seafood in Africa, and the city of Agadir is the world’s first sardine port. Sardines, anchovies, dorado, catfish, eel, clams, shrimp, lobster, crabs and even shark meat are cheap here and form the basis of the diet. Fish is usually grilled and served with fresh vegetable salads and hot tortillas. In the streets you can see vendors offering snails, a tradition that has survived since the early 20th century, when the French lived here. And also in Moroccan dishes you can find a combination of sweet, salty and spicy flavors. Here they like to serve meat with fruit – quince, dates, pineapple, melon, watermelon, guava and, of course, citrus fruits.
Moroccan cuisine contains many dessert recipes, most of them based on fruit and spices. You will love kaab el gzal, a croissant with almond filling sprinkled with sugar, baklava cake with nuts and honey syrup, and macrud, tubes with dates in lemon syrup. Briyuat cookies resemble our familiar horseradish, but are served with nuts and honey. Honey cakes are sold at every step in Morocco, and even in remote villages you will certainly be treated to a thin fried tortilla dipped in honey syrup.
The main drinks of Morocco are sweet green tea with mint and strong coffee with cardamom. Drinking tea with family and friends is one of the most important local traditions. Since Morocco is very hot, locals drink the traditional green tea with mint and sugar from morning till night. No conversation begins without a cup of tea, and if you refuse this sign of hospitality, you can greatly offend the owner of the house. The Moroccan tea ceremony begins with a handful of green tea poured into a metal kettle, then mint leaves are put into it and it is boiled for a few minutes on the fire. Sugar can be added directly to the kettle or directly to the cup. The tea is poured into glasses only halfway, and the kettle is held at a high altitude so that foam can form in the glass – the more foam, the better the drink tastes.
There is a lot of coffee here, and it is practically everywhere. Coffee with milk, on the other hand, is less common and has its own name, kahu kasse. Among strong drinks, the local mahiya (fig or date vodka) is popular, although it is drunk more by foreigners. Muslim traditions forbid the locals to drink alcohol. It is also worth mentioning that Morocco makes the best wine in all of North Africa. There are separate tours to the wineries, and tourists visit the wineries, go down into the cellars with oak barrels, taste the pink, red and white w The most culinary city of Morocco is Fez. The city’s cafes and restaurants offer sumptuous dishes that resemble works of art. Be sure to visit the restaurant La Maison Bleue, where a single meal offers five changes of exquisite dishes. There are cooking classes in Fes, led by some of the most renowned chefs. Marakesh has some of the best culinary schools in the country, and the restaurants in the city, decorated in the traditions of the colonial style, the sound of jazz and French cuisine reigns. The capital of Morocco, Rabat, is famous for its couscous with seven kinds of vegetables, couscous with onions and caramelized raisins (kseksou bet’faya), couscous with egg and almonds (kseksou bel beid wa louz). In Meknes, which is called the “city of a hundred minarets,” Egyptian, Jewish, Spanish and French cuisines are predominant. The area around Meknes is home to some of the best olives in the country. If you get to the southern town of Taliouin, which is called the saffron town, visit the saffron museum, tasting room and store dedicated to this spice. ines, which, incidentally, are exported to France.
If you want to fully immerse yourself in the atmosphere of Morocco, stay during your trip in riads, private mansions with antique furnishings. You will be delighted by the colorful mosaic floors, antique furniture, silk linens and colorful stained glass windows. If you’re staying at the hotel, come to the riads for lunch or dinner – you’ll get a real treat from the high cuisine and impeccable service.
On the website of our partner – the Chocotravel cheap ticket service – you will find air tickets at the most reasonable prices.