Moroccan cuisine is a Mediterranean cuisine characterized by its variety of dishes stemming from the Arab, Berber and Jewish traditions. It has features in common with cooking from other parts of the Maghreb, while maintaining a unique cultural originality.
Moroccan cuisine is a lifestyle in itself. Like crafts, Moroccan cuisine is an expression of the talent of the cook who combines different ingredients to bring out the most beautiful flavors. Very balanced and nutritious, it is still prepared the old way, with love and dedication. Simple and natural gestures give rhythm to the various phases of food preparation.
Spices play a leading role: saffron, dill, clove, coriander, ginger, paprika, cumin, pepper, and turmeric are very often used as are curry, garlic and nigella seeds. Moreover, Moroccan cuisine uses herbs to enhance the taste of dishes and to perfume them: parsley, rosemary, oregano, fennel, thyme, anise, bay leaves, and basil are the most common.
Moroccan cuisine is characterized by a wide variety of dishes. The most well-known are of course the many variations of couscous, different kinds of tajines with chicken, meat or vegetables, pastilia in puff pastry filled with meat or fish, briwat and nems (small puffs) filled with meat or vegetables. There are also more popular and typical dishes: the tangia from Marrakech, harira (soup to break the fast during Ramadan), seffa, as well as all dishes with legumes such as lentils, split peas, white or red beans.
As for Moroccan salads they are characterized by their freshness and consist of raw as well as steamed vegetables. Finally, Moroccan pastry is also very varied. Essentially made out of almonds and honey, it accompanies a good glass of mint tea and is always present during religious feasts and social celebrations such as weddings and feasts.
Sharing a meal constitutes always an important ritual in the Moroccan society and family. Usually placed on a round table, a symbol of unity and union, the tajine is eaten by the guests or the family members from the same dish.