Basic Moroccan dishes may start with a hearty, incredibly full soup, most frequently the spicy bean and pasta Harira. As an alternative, you might begin with a salad that has been extremely finely chopped, or you could eat it as a side dish to your main course, which is often a plateful of kebabs, such as brochettes (little lamb pieces on a skewer) or Kefta (minced lamb). Some small, hole-in-the-wall eateries specialize in soup, which they serve by the bowlful all day long. You can typically spot these establishments by the front-facing stack of soup bowls. In addition to Harira, some eateries also sell Bisara, a thick pea soup with olive oil on top, particularly for breakfast.
A tajine, which is essentially a stew that is steamed-cooked slowly in an earthenware bowl with a conical ceramic lid, is another meal that you may buy anywhere. The term “tajine,” like “casserole,” actually refers to the bowl and lid rather than the food. Lamb or mutton with prunes and almonds, as well as chicken with olives and lemon, are examples of traditional tajines. You might get a fish or veggie tajine or a meatball tajine with eggs on top less frequently. 7 days in morocco itinerary.
In small eateries in the Medina with just two or three tables, kebabs and tajines frequently cost less than 30dh (£2.25/$3.50). Cooked food is not up to negotiation, but if you don’t inquire about prices before placing an order, you risk paying more. Frequently, there is no menu and merely a board with Arabic writing.
You can purchase a half-baguette from any bread or grocery store for breakfast or a snack, along with optional butter, jam, cheese, or eggs, then take it into a coffee shop to place an order. Even cafes that don’t provide any other cuisine may offer bread as a breakfast, butter, and jam (as in most hotels), or perhaps an omelet. Other establishments have stalls outside selling traditional griddle bread by weight, including Harsha (quite heavy with a gritty crust), Melaoui, or Msammen (sprinkled with oil, rolled out thin, folded over, and rolled out again several times, similar to an Indian paratha), and Baghira. Some establishments also serve soup, such as Harira, with bread (full of holes like a very thin English crumpet). If not, you could purchase additional items like dates, olives, yogurt, or soft white cheese (Ejben).
Small kebabs or spicy merguez sausages made at roadside kiosks (make sure the sausages are properly done), peanuts, sunflower seeds, or roasted chickpeas served at peanut , and Sfenj (doughnut-shaped fritters), sold from small businesses, especially early in the morning, are examples of street cuisine. 10 days tour from Casablanca to sahara desert.
Typically, restaurants provide seafood, especially near the seaside. They also frequently serve lamb (Agneau) or mutton (mouton), generally in a tajine, and chicken (poulet), which can be grilled over a spit or cooked in a tajine with lemon and olives (poulet aux olives et citron). Pastilla, a delicious pigeon or chicken pie made with filo pastry and coated with sugar and cinnamon, is also occasionally available; it is a specialty of Fez.
The most well-known Moroccan cuisine is, of course, couscous, a giant bowl of cooked semolina that is typically topped with vegetables, mutton, chicken, or even fish. Couscous is Berber in origin. Since eating out is not really a Moroccan custom, restaurant couscous can be disappointing because this is a dish that is typically made at home, especially on Fridays or for special occasions.
You may also find Mechoui, or roast lamb, at festivals, which are always good places to find intriguing food, and in the priciest tourist eateries. Mechoui may even take the form of a full sheep grilled on a spit. Tanjia, which is beef or lamb cooked extremely slowly in the embers of a hammam furnace, is another specialty, particularly in Marrakesh.
Dessert options include pastries, crème caramel, or even house-made yogurt, which is frequently the case even in budget restaurants. In the alternative, you could get fruit, perhaps an orange or a fruit salad.
Restaurants are normally open from noon to 3 pm for lunch and from 7 pm to 11 pm for supper, while less expensive establishments could be open earlier and later. If you don’t verify the price before ordering, places that don’t post their prices will probably overcharge you.
The name “tajine” only refers to the cooking vessel, much as the words “paella” or “casserole,” not the meal that is cooked inside. A tajine is a large, heavy ceramic platter with a conical lid on top. The nicest tajines, embellished in a variety of hues and patterns, are made in Safi, but Salé produces the best tajines for practical use, which are simple reddish-brown in color. In a tajine, the veggies are heaped high around the meat, which is placed in the center. The tajine is then covered and allowed to simmer slowly in low light, or even better, over a charcoal stove (Kanoun), which is typically a stove designed expressly for the tajine and sold alongside it. Traditional tajines include fruit, meat, and spices. Green olives, lemons preserved in brine, and chicken are usually cooked in a tajine. Prunes and almonds are frequently used when cooking lamb or beef. When consuming a tajine, the bread is used to scoop up the food as you move from the veggies on the outside to the meat in the center of the dish.
In most of Morocco, vegetarianism is not well understood, but certain restaurants are beginning to recognize that some visitors may be vegetarians, and many establishments now do provide a meat-free tajine or couscous. Even a vegetarian restaurant may be found in Marrakesh (see Café Argana), and pizza is typically sold in big cities. Other than omelets and sandwiches, menus don’t generally offer many clear options. A typical morning meal called Bisara (pea soup) should be meat-free, although Harira (bean soup), which is typically prepared with animal fats, may or may not contain beef stock. You can say “I’m a vegetarian” (ana nabaati in Arabic or Je suis vegetarien/vegetarian in French) but you might not be understood. To make your point more clear, you could possibly add la akulu lehoum (wala hout) in Arabic or je ne mange aucune sorte de viande (ni Poisson), both of them mean “I don’t eat any kind of meat (or fish)”.
If you follow a strict vegetarian or vegan diet, it may be worthwhile to pack some basic food items (like yeast extract, peanut butter, and veggie stock cubes) as well as a small camping gas stove and pan. Canisters are inexpensive but difficult to come by (Carrefour hypermarkets typically have them, as does the DIY chain Mr.Bricolage), and some low-cost hotels permit guests to cook in their rooms.
The circumstances where you are invited to eat at someone’s home are the most challenging. Because they don’t realize that you don’t eat meat, you might find that people give you meat when you specifically requested for veggies. In this case, you can decide that it’s more essential to avoid offending someone who is being kind to you than to be rigid about your abstinence. Selecting vegetables from a meat tajine won’t irritate your hosts, but refusing the meal entirely could result in the mother, sister, or wife in the kitchen receiving criticism.
Morocco has an incredibly wide variety of seasonal fruits. In addition to the different varieties of dates, which are available all year long but are at their best when picked fresh in October, there are also grapes, melons, strawberries, peaches, and figs, all of which should be thoroughly cleaned before consumption. You may also get large quantities of prickly pear (cactus fruit), peeled for you on the street for a few dirhams at the appropriate season, for a genuine thirst quencher (and a wonderful remedy for an upset stomach) (in winter).
Coffee, Tea, and soft beverages
The national beverage is mint tea, which is Chinese gunpowder green tea flavored with mint sprigs (naanaa in Arabic: the gift of Allah) and sweetened with a lot of sugar, frequently from a sugar loaf (atay deeyal naanaa in Arabic, thé à la menthe in French, “Whisky Marocain,” as residents claim) (you can take it with little or no sugar – Shweeya Soukar or le Soukar). To “keep away the cold,” Moroccans frequently add wormwood (Chiba in Arabic, absinthe in French) to their tea in the winter. Additionally, black tea is available (Atai Ahmar in Arabic, thé rouge in French, literally “red tea”), which is invariably prepared with Lipton’s tea bags, a popular brand that Moroccans adore and view as particularly English. Verbena is the primary herbal infusion (verveine or louiza).
A variety of delicious freshly squeezed juices are also widely available at cafés and street vendors, including orange juice (jus orange in French, ‘Asir Burtuqal in Arabic – if you don’t like sugar in it, you’ll need to say so), almond milk (jus d’Amande or ‘Asir Louze), banana “juice,” which is actually a milkshake (jus des bananas or ‘as Asir panaché, a mixed fruit milkshake that frequently includes raisins, is also popular. It tastes better than it sounds and does wonders to settle an upset stomach. Leben is soured milk.
Although tap water in Morocco is often chlorinated and safe to drink, most visitors choose to stick with bottled water. The term “mineral water” is typically used to refer to a specific brand, most commonly the still Sidi Harazem or Sidi Ali (some claim to be able to differenciate between the two), or the naturally sparkling Oulmès. Under the brand name Ciel, the Coca-Cola Company sells filtered, processed, non-mineral water in bottles. In French-style cafés, the best coffee (café) is noir (black), cassé (with a touch of milk), or au lait (with loads of milk). Like teabag tea, instant coffee is identified by its brand, in this case, Nescafé.
Last but not least, always purchase and consume fresh milk. Don’t touch anything that even slightly smells off.
Beer and wine
As an Islamic country, Morocco places a low value on drinking alcohol, and it is typically impossible to purchase alcohol in the city of Medinas. While women may feel uncomfortable in regular bars (while bartenders may occasionally be female, Moroccan women are likely to be playing the game), upscale bars, particularly those in Marrakesh or Casablanca or in tourist hotels, are typically fine. Moroccan wines can be drinkable enough even if they are a touch heavy to drink alone. The pinkish-red Clairet de Meknès, which is created intentionally light in the French claret manner, is the best. Another excellent one is Beauvallon, which is often used for export only. The robust red Cabernet, the red Ksar, Guerrouane, and Siraoua, the rosé Gris de Boulaoune, and the dry white Spécial Coquillages are further varietals worth tasting.
Moroccans who frequent bars typically stick to beer, typically the neighborhood Stork or Flag. Many people believe that the flag from Fez is superior to the one made in Casablanca (the label will show you which it is). Heineken, which is produced in Morocco with a license, is the most well-known international brand.