All posts filed under: Morocco

Monday Meal Review: Morocco

As I set our Moroccan Global Table I know something is wrong.  I know because I’m doing it on purpose. The table sits outside, under a tree, covered by dappled shade and a soft cotton cloth. I tuck the benches right up to the table, so Ava can eat without a giant void between her and the table. I look at the clock; Ava’s friend Isabel, her sister Emma, and her parents will be here any minute. After a moment of hesitation, I make my decision and quickly place seven dinner plates on the tablecloth. This is where I go wrong. This is what I should not be doing. To make matters worse, I continue by placing seven sets of silverware on the table and seven cups. The table is loaded to the brim. If I were living the traditional Moroccan way I would not be using all these dishes. We would tear off pieces of bread and use it to scoop up the lamb from the communal tagine, straight into our mouths. In fact, Moroccan …

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Moroccan Carrot & Juicy Orange Salad

Pretty, pretty, pretty. Say hello to the juiciest carrot salad in the world. Inspired by the cuisine of Morocco, the salad blends shredded carrots with fresh squeezed orange juice (loads of pulp!), cinnamon, sugar, and orange blossom water. It’s all kinds of crazy and… it works. I felt that, hot on the heels of our Mongolian Carrot salad, it’d be fun to make a variation from Morocco. And I’m so glad I took the risk. This is one wild salad. So take a deep breath, and breathe in the orange blossom goodness. NOTES: While it won’t be quite as good, if you decide to use orange juice instead of squeezing your own, please get the extra pulp kind. Those little bursts of pulp really make this salad special. Also, try shredding your carrots even finer, as this easier to eat the traditional way (in a tea glass with small spoon). You may purchase similar glasses at your local Middle Eastern market. Ingredients: 2 lb carrots, grated 2 cups fresh squeezed orange juice (all the pulp …

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Moroccan Honey Buttered Semolina “Crater” Pancakes | Beghrir

Oh, goodness. Where do I even begin? Do you see that honey dripping off the edge of the crater cakes? Each drop is perfumed with the haunting aroma of orange blossom water and butter. Hello. I mean, really. I’m pretty sure I can just pack up and go home now. My job is done. Talk about good-glorious-eats! But, for those few who aren’t yet sure if this Moroccan treat – officially called Beghrir – is right for their breakfast table, let me continue. These semolina pancakes aren’t really pancakes. They are fried on one side only. The other side is utterly soft and yeasty, and pocked with thousands of holes. The bottom is crispy, while the top is light and airy. They’re like a crumpet’s long lost cousin. The holes are perfect for catching pools of orange blossom honey sauce, by the way. While some like them almost as thin as crepes and as large as a dinner plate, you can also make them smaller and a bit on the thicker side, as I did. The choice is yours. For …

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Moroccan Lamb Tagine with Sweet Honey Figs

Today I’m taking you to a special place where family and friends gather around the dinner table with happy hearts. Silverware is optional, but bread is not. Settle into this sacred space, where tagine of lamb meets chestnuts, figs, cinnamon, honey, and orange blossom water. Pause for a moment to celebrate this crazy wonderful combination, to feel the hot air blow through your hair, then dig in and scoop up the glory with a handful of bread. When you’re done, cozy up to an evening of conversation so good you wish you could bottle it. Tagines are Moroccan party food – each nibble is filled with glorious, cheerful flavor; a festive bite of beauty; a deep, dark bowl of goodness, glimmering like the Moroccan night sky. To be honest, there was a time when the word “tagine” sent shivers down my spine. The very word sounded terribly exotic which, in my mind, translated to “extraordinarily difficult to make.” If I only knew how wrong I was. I’ve since learned that many Moroccan tagines, such as …

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Menu: Morocco

This week we’re trying three completely different recipes which all use one magical Moroccan ingredient: orange blossom water. Have you ever used it? The perfume-like water lends a dreamy flavor to ordinary ingredients. While almost impossible to describe, I’d say that each splash of orange blossom water makes the food taste “prettier” which, of course, inspired me to splash a little behind my ears. Whether or not this is normal, I was happy as  can be, walking around, smelling like Morocco. What sounds good to you?* Lamb Tagine with Sweet Honey Figs [Recipe] Tender pieces of lamb slow-cooked in saffron, cinnamon and ginger, then topped with figs and chestnuts which have simmered in a honey and orange blossom water sauce. Carrot & Juicy Orange Salad [Recipe] Mountains of carrots grated and mixed with the juice of fresh squeezed oranges, cinnamon, sugar, and fragrant orange blossom water. Semolina “Crater” Pancakes (Behgrir) [Recipe] This lovely yeast-risen batter is cooked on one side only, creating thousands of tiny craters – perfect for filling with a yummy blend of …

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Ziz River, Morocco. Photo by Jerzy Strzelecki.

About the food of Morocco

Ohh, ok. Here we are. This is Morocco week at the Global Table (and the crowd goes wild!). To be honest I was pretty nervous about this week. As far as I’m concerned, Morocco is a culinary giant. This comes from growing up in France, where delectable Moroccan dishes make regular appearances on Parisian menus. As I got to reading, however, I quickly realized that the food – although filled with intensely fragrant, glorious spices like cinnamon, cumin, saffron, and ginger – can be wonderfully straightforward in preparation. Three cheers for that! Perhaps this has to do with living in a hot, mountainous country – energy is better preserved than squandered, even in the kitchen. Case in point: the other day I watched Anthony Bourdain enjoy a whole roasted lamb in the desert during one of his early shows. This epic feast amounted to no more than a hot fire, a good piece of meat, and time enough to cook it. Sometimes that’s all we need. Simple, simple, simple. And then there’s the national dish – …

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