What to eat in Morocco
When you think of Moroccan food what comes to mind first?. Before my trip I would have said couscous, tagines and dates were Moroccan cuisine. These foods are popular but so are many other Moroccan dishes that I did not even know about and I was pleasantly surprised. You will not go hungry in Morocco there are food outlets on nearly every street, well it felt like it anyway.
Exploring the Medinas in Morocco you are going to see so many different spices, lentils, and nuts, I don’t even know what most of them are but they are very colourful and fragrant and it is wonderful walking round the market stalls to see what they are selling.
I must admit I have never had a tagine and I have been missing out. Most restaurants in Morocco serve some type of tagine dish and it is something you have to try during your Morocco trip. A tagine is a type of stew and it is also the name of the pot that this dish is cooked in.
The design of the pot is a conical shape which offers a moist hot environment (do I sound like a chef??) for the stew to cook. It makes the stews so tasty they come in variety of flavours including lamb, beef, chicken and vegetable. The most common type of tagine I came across was chicken and lemon which I had a few times during my trip to Morocco and it was delicious. Even vegetable tagines were nice, and I am not a big veggie fan.
I do not like couscous I find it dry and tasteless but when I had it in Morocco it actually had flavour. I am still not a huge fan and wouldn’t eat bowls of the stuff but it was a nice alternative accompaniment. Before I visited Morocco I did think couscous would be served everywhere and with everything and this would be the only thing you could have but I only had it a couple of times.
Street food in Marrakech is popular but I had a little bit of a bad experience so be careful. In the medina in Marrakech at night there are many street food vendors and they are trying to get your custom so are waving menus in front of you and trying to get you to take a seat at one of their tables.
I love street food, but I was put off by my experience in Marrakech and I would recommend doing a street food tour if you are keen to try or at least make sure you get a recommendation of which stall to go to.
The one we chose was very busy so we thought it must be good but once they got us sat down their attitude sort of changed and tbh I just wanted to get up and leave. When the man with the menu was trying to get us in, he was like you can have this, this or this pointing to lovely things on the menu and seemed friendly but once we sat down a different abrupt man came to serve us and was like “Yes what do you want?” we didn’t really know what we were getting, me and a couple of others order the meat skewers and some stuck to veggie dishes.
The man then went to plonk dishes on the table such as you get in any restaurant like the tomato salad and breads, but these are not free. He kept bringing more dishes and we said are these free he just smiled and when we asked for the 5th time he said no so we told him to take them away. He was doing it with everyone that was coming in, we let the family that sat next to us know these dishes were not free and they too sent them back, so we were getting evil looks I felt so uncomfortable.
When the meat skewers came, they were tiny and so not worth the money and it wasn’t cheap compared to restaurants it was the same price I always though street food was supposed to be cheap. Then we found that the meat was raw in the middle since some of it was chicken, I just couldn’t eat it as I am so funny about getting ill when travelling I am not going to risk eating undercooked street food so we sort of ate quickly and left as fast as we could.
It turned out to be one of the most expensive meals we had during our trip in Morocco so I would have to say be careful with the street food and do your research if you are going to eat it. However, it was a nice to walk around at night and smell the dishes that were being cooked, but I wouldn’t eat there again unless I had a good recommendation.
We saw many carts with locals crowded round and when we got closer, they were selling snails. People were stood around eating them whilst having a quick chat then went on their way.
There is a French influence in Morocco due to the country being part of a French colony back in history. So it is no surprise there are lots of crepes on offer.
When I think of French food I think of snails and crepes and they seem to be so many crepe cafes if you like sweet or savoury crepes you will not be disappointed.
They also have their own version of a crepe known as the Moroccan pancake which was very popular at breakfast and was slightly thicker than an English pancake but not as thick as an American pancake and were perfect with Nutella on yummy.
Harira is a thick soup with chick peas lentils and haricot beans had this on first day and it was tasty and filling.
Pastilla / bastilla pie
These are a pie with salty and sweet combination made with flaky pastry Normally they are filled with chicken or fish, almonds and spices topped with icing sugar.
I really didn’t know what to expect as the fact it has icing sugar on top just sounds wrong, but it was nice. I wanted to try a pastilla whilst in Marrakech as I had read some great reviews, but I ran out of time. I then got to try one at the airport and it was so tasty, I was gutted that I only got to eat a pastilla when I was about to leave as knowing how tasty they were I would have had a few more during my 10-day morocco tour.
It is kind of spicy, not hot spicy it is hard to describe as it is not like anything I have tasted before but it was packed full of chicken and the flavours even though sound strange actually all go well together.
Read More : Best places for basilla in Marrakech
Restaurants in Morocco
There were a variety of restaurants in Morocco and to be honest I think you will be able to find most cuisines. I was surprised at the number of places offering pizzas, burgers and pasta this is not something I was expecting during my trip to Morocco.
There are lots of restaurants and there wasn’t one place I visited where I found it hard to find somewhere to eat.
Mezzes are a small selection of dishes normally served as an appetiser. In a lot of restaurants these are brought out to you whilst you are waiting for your ordered food. Aubergine dip served cold was common as well as tomato and onion salad normally also served with breads and olives.
I don’t like olives but the ones in Morocco were delicious. A lot of places offer them for free and I started to pick at them one day and I couldn’t believe how fresh tasting they were totally different to the ones I have tried before. They were green or black, but the green ones were my favourite as they were slightly salty and sweet at the same time.
It is not on every menu but when we found it on the menu in the clock café most of our group had to try it and it was tasty. I probably wouldn’t have noticed the difference if I didn’t know it was camel. You can also get camel fillet and other camel meat dishes.
Alcohol in Morocco
Muslims are not permitted to drink alcohol, but it is available in some tourist laces such ad hotels and restaurants but not all. It can be expensive and if you go to a supermarket there is a separate section to purchase alcohol.
There local beer was nice I tried a couple of brands including stork and flag and Casablanca which were all good, to be fair there are not many lagers I dont like. Heineken is also a common imported beer.
They also make Moroccan wine which is produced on three regions of Berkane, Meknes and Boulaouane.
Mechoui lamb is slow roasted whole on a spit or baked in a special oven I didn’t notice this during my 2 weeks in Morocco as it is considered a luxury and needs to be ordered in advance, so you probably must go to a specialist restaurant to try this dish.
Cornes de gazelle
Cornes de gazelle croissant is like pastries filled with honey and almonds, we had these at a few hotels for breakfast and they were delicious.
Pomegranates were served a lot for dessert and they were so juicy you cold also get fresh juices. The best way to eat the pomegranate was to give it a little whack and the seeds would pop out onto your plate. There were lots of other fruits available and often seen being sold on street stalls. I had some really juicy pineapple which is not native to Morocco but was served quite often. Also I saw a lot of oranges which is one of the crops growns in Morocco
Meat skewers were popular on most menus. You could try some camel meat as mentioned above but they mostly seemed to be lamb.
Snacks were easy to get hold of and there were plenty available on stalls and in shops including chocolates, biscuits and crisps. I loved a chocolate bar and had to stock up to bring it home with me.
Lamb and dates were popular on menus as well as dates as desserts. I often saw them being sold in the Medinas in Morocco and they seemed to come in a lot of different shapes and sizes.
I saw a lot of goats during my trip in Morocco so it is no surprise that goats cheese is going to be a delicacy and it is especially popular in Chefchaouen where they make a type of goats cheese that is only available here.
There mint tea is widely available and if often offered as part free of charge after a meal or when you visit somewhere. It is very sweet and not my cup of tea as I prefer strong black tea with no sugar. The tea is served in little glasses and some of them are so pretty. These tea sets are easy to buy in the Medinas in Morocco.
I absolutely love bread and ate so much flat bread whilst I was travelling in Morocco.
Nougat in Fez
Nougat is popular in Fes and can be found in a lot of other cities in Morocco. It was on stalls in large slabs or you could buy a pot of chopped up nougat. The version I tried was so good it was a salty but sweet delicacy with large nuts in.
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