Morocco is different from many other African countries – it produces almost all the food needed to feed its people. This abundance of fresh, local and seasonal produce makes the country a paradise for foodies. Oranges, melons, olives, figs and almonds are just a small selection of the fantastic home-grown produce Morocco has to offer.
With a diverse population originating from Spain, France, Andalusia, the Middle-East, and more, the food here is a melting pot of different influences. What we can say, for sure, is that Moroccan food is celebrated for being bold, aromatic and damn tasty.
Located on the coast of the Mediterranean, fresh fish and seafood are plentiful, with locals grilling the catch of the day as the boats come in! Beef isn’t widely available, so dishes are usually centered around lamb or poultry.
While there are regional variations of dishes depending on the locally available produce, the essence of the meals remains the same. Here are the 5 quintessential Moroccan dishes you need to try!
Originating from Fez, this flaky pastry pie is traditionally served at celebrations. It has a perfect balance between sweet and savory – stuffed with, succulent pigeon meat, almonds, and saffron, cinnamon, and fresh coriander spiced eggs. B’stilla has recently become a street food staple. Good news – you don’t need to get married to eat it!
Zaalouk & B’sara
A true Moroccan feast always starts with a variety of salads, breads, and dips. Zaalouk, one of the most popular dips, is a smoky aubergine puree generously seasoned with paprika, cumin, garlic and a little chili. Another one of Morocco’s more iconic dips is b’sara. It’s a puree made from broad beans, seasoned with paprika, cumin and a drizzle of olive oil. Best enjoyed with an oven-fresh khubz, a traditional flatbread.
During the month of Ramadan, people will break their fast at sunset with a big, warm bowl of harira soup. This breakfast is a hearty lamb broth made with tomatoes, lentils, and chickpeas with a squeeze of lemon and a generous handful of fresh coriander. Typically served with a chebakia – a Morrocan honey baked pretzel.
Widely considered the Moroccan national dish, the tagine is loved by millions and has spread to all corners of the globe. The name comes from the clay pot that they are cooked in. You’ll find regional and seasonal varieties, depending on what ingredients are available fresh and locally. One thing in Morocco is certain – you’ll never be too far away from one of these rich, slow-cooked stews. Remember to have some thick, crusty bread on hand to mop up all those delicious juices.
Sweet Mint Tea
A day without sweet mint tea in Morocco isn’t really a day at all. The country’s national drink, locals will usually have this at least twice a day. Served hot and traditionally brewed in ornate metal pots, this mint tea is sweetened with plenty of sugar and poured into small glasses from a height to create a lovely, smooth froth.