I’m not sure I really knew what traditional Moroccan food tasted like. I think I thought there were lots of spices involved, as it is a country which is known for its spices. So call me surprised when I didn’t find the food to be all that flavorful. In all my time there, I had just 3 good meals. The first was at my riad in Essaouira. After eating really bad food at the cafes, (I even tried a pizza one day to have something “normal” and was sorely disappointed. How do you screw up a pizza?) I asked the staff at my riad to prepare dinner for me. That was a good meal. A fresh salad, a delicious tagine, good wine and fresh pomegranate seeds for dessert. Yummy.
The second meal came while on my camel ride in Essaouria. On the banks of the sea, a little man in a tent cooked up the meal you see pictured here. The salad was simply tomatoes and onions. The tagine here is chicken with tomato, onion, olives and a variety of parsley. Super simple and yet tasty. The bread in Morocco is also quite delicious. It’s a round loaf which is a cross between a pita and french bread. Really good.
My last meal in Morroco was at my second riad, my last evening in Marrakech. I also asked the staff to prepare something (I let them choose). I was offered a delcius soup which was similar to a minestrone. Then some couscous with veggies and a baked chicken with onions and such. Also very delicious. I think the common thread to the level of yumminess is that all three of my best meals were home cooked. Not from a restaurant. Even at the glamorous events of the trade show, the food was just so-so.
I’m sure if I did a bit of research and more hunting, I could find some awesome restaurants in Marrakech. I know they exist. I know there are some terrific dishes I haven’t had a chance to try. Again – next year!
Tagine – receives its name from the clay pot it is cooked in. Over the base is a triangular top, all of which is cooked over an open fire. It’s like an old fashion crock-pot! Put all the ingredients in and cook!
PHOTO: In Marrakech – A cafe in the heart of the medina, at the edge of the Djemaa el Fna.
If there is one small detail I have noticed in all of my travels, there are a handful of foods and beverages you can find anywhere in the world…and I do mean anywhere. These global food items include Coca Cola, M&Ms, Pringles, pizza and an up-and-comer, Mentos.
While it’s sometimes very comforting to find these things in the middle-of-nowhere, I find this really disturbing.