Moroccan cuisine is influenced by Morocco’s interactions and exchanges with other cultures and nations over the centuries.Moroccan cuisine is typically a mix of Mediterranean, Arabic, Andalusian and Berber cuisine. Common meats include beef, goat,mutton and lamb, chicken and seafood, which serve as a base for the cuisine. Characteristic flavorings include lemon pickle, cold-pressed, unrefined olive oil and dried fruits. Spices are used extensively in Moroccan food. Although spices have been imported to Morocco through the Arabs for thousands of years, many ingredients — like saffron from Talaouine, mint and olives from Meknes, and oranges and lemons from Fes — are home-grown. Common spices include cinnamon, cumin, turmeric, ginger etc.  Common herbs in Moroccan cuisine include mint ,parsley, coriander, peppermint, marjoram, caraway verbena.

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Moroccan Spread

I got to taste this delicious spread of Moroccan Cuisine at Pullman Deira City Center Hotel on the occasion of Moroccan National Day. I was a guest with other very important personalities from Moroccan Consulate, Delegates from UAE and other countries etc. It was a proud day for the Moroccan people.

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Moroccan National Day

To start with the Cold Mezze there was a delectable spread of Hummus, Grape Leafs, Baba Ganouj, Cucumber Labneh, Moutable etc. It was very light,healthy and one of the most luscious spread.

From the Salad section there was Nicoise Salad, Grilled Artichokes, Pickles & Chutneys etc.

Salads include both raw and cooked vegetables, served either hot or cold.  Cold salads include zaalouk, an aubergine and tomato mixture, and taktouka (a mixture of tomatoes, green peppers, garlic and spices) characteristic of the cities of Taza and Fes, in the Atlas.

This one was very new to me as i have never tasted any Moroccan cuisine before.The Mama Moroccan Salad. Deliciously spread varieties of Potato, Cauliflower, Eggplant Salads. One of the most relishing salads ever tasted by me.

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A big part of the daily meal is bread. Bread in Morocco is principally made from durum wheat semolina known as khobz. Bakeries are very common throughout Morocco and fresh bread is a staple in every city, town and village. The most common is whole grain coarse ground or white flour bread or baguettes. There are also a number of flat breads and pulled unleavened pan-fried breads.

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Moroccan Flat Bread

Chicken Pastilla,  It is a pie which combines sweet and salty flavors; a combination of crisp layers of the crepe-like werqa dough (a thinner cousin of the phyllo dough), savory meat slow-cooked in broth and spices and shredded, and a crunchy layer of toasted and ground almonds, cinnamon, and sugar. Pastilla is generally served as a starter at the beginning of special meals.

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Chicken Pastilla

Seafood Pastilla, same as the Chciken one ], the only difference is that here Seafood is used.

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SeaFood Pastilaa

Moroccan and Algerian tajine dishes are slow-cooked savory stews, typically made with sliced meat, poultry or fish together with vegetables or fruit. Spices, nuts, and dried fruits are also used. Common spices include ginger, cumin, turmeric, cinnamon, and saffron. Paprika and chili are used in vegetable tajines. The sweet and sour combination is common in tajine dishes like lamb with dates and spices. Tajines are generally served with bread. Because the domed or cone-shaped lid of the tajine pot traps steam and returns the condensed liquid to the pot, a minimal amount of water is needed to cook meats and vegetables. This method of cooking is practical in areas where water supplies are limited or where public water is not yet available. Both Lamb and Chicken Tajines were servedto te guest and it was delicious and divine in taste.

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Lamb Prunes Tajine
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Chicken Tajine

Lamb Couscous Tfaya, the semolina is sprinkled with water and rolled with the hands to form small pellets, sprinkled with dry flour to keep them separate, and then sieved. Any pellets that are too small to be finished granules of couscous fall through the sieve and are again rolled and sprinkled with dry semolina and rolled into pellets. This process continues until all the semolina has been formed into tiny granules of couscous. This process is labor-intensive. In the traditional method of preparing couscous, groups of women came together to make large batches over several days, which were then dried in the sun and used for several months. Couscous was traditionally made from the hard part of the durum, the part of the grain that resisted the grinding of the millstone. In modern times, couscous production is largely mechanized, and the product is sold in markets around the world.

Properly cooked couscous is light and fluffy, not gummy or gritty. Traditionally,used a food steamer (called aTaseksut in Berber, in Arabic or a couscoussier in French). The base is a tall metal pot shaped rather like an oil jar in which the meat and vegetables are cooked as a stew. On top of the base, a steamer sits where the couscous is cooked, absorbing the flavours from the stew. The lid to the steamer has holes around its edge so steam can escape. It is also possible to use a pot with a steamer insert. If the holes are too big, the steamer can be lined with damp cheesecloth.

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Lamb Couscous Tfaya

Moroccan Seffa, sweet couscous made with cinnamon, sugar, and sometimes studded with prunes, raisins and almonds.It is served with cream.

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Moroccan Seffa

The Dessert spread was a delicious too, from Chocolate Mousse, Lemon Tart, Fruit Tart, Dates Stuffed, Baklava etc.

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Dessert Spread

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Moroccan cuisine is considered one of the most important cuisines in the world. One of the reasons for its importance is its remarkable diversity of influences. In Moroccan dishes, one can trace the country’s long history of colonizers and immigrants who have left their mark in more than one way. The cuisine of the first inhabitants, the Berbers, still exists today in the staple dishes like tagine and couscous.

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