In our new Globe Trotter series, Viral Travel reviews all the best places to see, eat and stay at in every country of the world!
This week we visit: Kingdom of Morocco
Fusion isn’t a new trend in Moroccan cuisine, where the blend of Mediterranean, Arabic, Jewish, Persian, West African and Berber influences can satisfy every taste. Meals range from the diffa, a multicourse feast, to quick brochettes (kebab) from a roadside stall. Most of the ingredients are seasonal, grown locally and typically without chemicals.
Tagines, a fragrant stew of meat or fish, and vegetables, got its name after the distinctive conical earthenware vessel it’s cooked in, and is a Moroccans main staple.
Restaurants range from buffet diners to high-end establishments. Many offer à la carte menus and a three-course fixed-price menu. Restaurants in cities and large resorts are rather cosmopolitan, offering a fine selection of cuisines, including typical Moroccan fare, with French, Italian, Spanish and fusion dishes.
The best way to experience true Moroccan flavor is to try the street food. Djemaa el Fna square in the center of Marrakech is an explosion of food stalls after dark, and most other cities have their own foodie quarters as well.
Specialties include Harira (tomato-and-lentil-based soup), Pastilla (a pigeon-meat pie with flaky dough, cinnamon and sugar), Couscous (a savory semolina dish), Tajine (fragrant stew, with some combination of lamb, chicken or fish with onions, olives, almonds, tomato, herbs or dried fruit), Mechoui (slow-roasted stuffed lamb or beef).
Wines, beers and spirits are available to non-Muslim residents and tourists. By law, no-one is allowed to enjoy alcohol where they can see a mosque or during Ramadan. Locally produced wines, beers and mineral waters are fairly priced, but imported drinks are expensive.
Regional drinks include Mint tea (aka ‘Berber whiskey’, a strong green ‘gunpowder’ tea mixed with fresh mint and laced with sugar), Coffee (French, espresso or Turkish style).