Each Moroccan particular person I’ve ever met has used the phrase “you haven’t tasted X, till you’ve tasted my Mum’s,” or “My Mum makes the most effective….”
As a British lady married to a Moroccan, I’m decided that our 10-month-old son won’t be the exception to the rule.
Having at all times beloved to cook dinner, I used to be thrilled after I first met my husband’s household: as anybody who has ever visited a Moroccan house will already know, meals may be very a lot on the coronary heart of Morocco’s well-known hospitality.
A really Moroccan welcome. Picture credit score: Morocco World Information
From the day I arrived at their Essaouira house, the desk within the salon was by no means empty. Tagines, couscous, msemen, mint tea, extra tagines, tangia…, I may go on.
My mother-in-law’s kitchen was a door to a scrumptious realm of cabinets stuffed with unknown spices, herbs, preserved olives, and lemons, grains of each form and dimension, and a wealth of culinary secrets and techniques.
Inside every week of staying with my new in-laws, I had already realized the secrets and techniques of couscous over an extended morning of steaming and separating the grains, below the watchful eyes of my mother-in-law, her two sisters, and my grandmother-in-law.
Now, after three years of kitchen apprenticeship on the elbows of my Moroccan household, I’m the one urging company to tuck into steaming dishes of mouth-watering Moroccan meals.
So, right here is my foreigners’ information to cooking like a Moroccan Mum
The primary Moroccan dish I ever realized to cook dinner was what my husband calls an “specific tagine.”
This can be a dish for these evenings if you end up drained, too busy, or just feeling too lazy to cook dinner something difficult.
It has develop into a staple in our house and makes the rounds on the household dinner desk extra usually than I care to confess.
As promised, it is vitally primary however you do want one key piece of kit: a tagine.
You should buy tagines in most Moroccan souks (markets) for between MAD 30 and MAD 60 relying on the scale. If you’re travelling with out a Moroccan buddy or information who may also help with negotiating, don’t be afraid to be agency whereas haggling. It isn’t an costly piece of kit.
For those who do purchase a brand new one, bear in mind to soak it in water for at the very least 12 hours earlier than use to forestall cracking if you use it. It’s also possible to use a warmth diffuser beneath the tagine in the event you cook dinner over gasoline.
I often make this tagine on a gasoline hob however, in winter, we typically select to cook dinner it over a wooden hearth.
Vegetarians can observe the identical recipe however skip out the kefta (minced beef) or substitute with lentil balls.
Now it’s time to pop to the store
The components are additionally primary, so a fast journey to the nook store, souk (in the event you’re in Morocco), or native grocery store will cowl the whole lot.
The essential elements are:
1 massive onion
1 or 2 tomatoes
200g of minced beef
1 tablespoon of olive/vegetable oil or butter (I want olive oil)
Shopping for spices in Essaouira market. Picture credit score: Morocco World Information
three cloves of garlic (I typically put in additional as a result of my husband is an enormous garlic fan)
2 teaspoons of floor cumin
A beneficiant pinch of salt
A handful of chopped parsley is an efficient addition if you may get it. I additionally typically add a beneficiant handful of frozen or recent peas for additional nutritional vitamins!
Now get out your tagine
Historically, this tagine comes with bread. In Morocco we use the bread as cutlery and all tuck into one tagine within the center, nonetheless, after I serve this within the UK we use dinner plates, knives and forks, and boiled potatoes as a aspect dish as an alternative of the bread.