Have you heard of Morocco? Have you been there? How much do you know about Moroccan culture, history, food, tourism and more? A few days ago, when I tried to answer these questions for myself, I literally fell short of words. All that I knew was that the country shares it border with the Atlantic Ocean and Mediterranean Sea and is home to the Grand Atlas Mountains, the Sahara deserts and the popular city of Marrakesh. Ummm…anything more….Not really. Well, if you ask me today, I know quite a bit. Trust me, the delicious Moroccan food made me sit up and read about Morocco diligently. Now, I can’t wait to travel there.
Moroccan Food Festival
My ignorance was not meant to last long. The preview to Moroccan food festival at Ottimo at ITC Maurya was my first introduction to this country of many shades.The curated palette at the food festival introduced me to the cuisine, its history, some of the famous Moroccan cities, the use of spices, method of cooking and how Indian and Moroccan cooking share similarities. I also met the ambassador of Kingdom of Morocco in India and heard some local stories from him and his office staff. As they say, the best lessons are learned around dining table and indeed, the conversations that ensued were enlightening. Ever since, I have been reading about the country and being charmed every now and then. Morocco is the latest entrant to my “places to visit” list.
Moroccan cuisine is a delicious blend of Berber, Andalusian, Arab and Mediterranean cooking. Some of the popular dishes like Couscous, Tagine and Harira are Berber in origin.
In the words of the Ambassador, H.E. Mr. Mohamed MALIKI , “Here comes Mesmerizing Morocco in Incredible India. Morocco and India have many things in common, especially culture. We share the love for food, for use of spices and elaborate cooking. Moroccans do not measure the ingredients when they cook, they use their hand which comes from experience. Just like Indian food, Moroccan food is also prepared patiently, with lots of love and dedication.”
Some of the dishes that he himself recommended were Chicken Tagine, Rfissa, Lamb with olives, Harira Soup, Khuboos, Moroccan green tea and the desserts. Some of the sweets that you must look forward to trying are Sfouf, Chebbakiya and Briwat. He also suggested that we try the Moroccan mint tea or green tea with the local sweets (pastries).The whole ambiance that was created was musical, festive and aesthetic, giving us a feel of Morocco. I am sure you wouldn’t like to miss an experience like this, if in the capital.
Where can you have all of it?
At the Moroccan Food Festival in collaboration with the Embassy of the
Kingdom of Morocco!!
Dates: 22nd – 30th March for Dinner only
Venue – Ottimo at West View
Hello Morocco (facts and figures). As much as I have been reading about the country, I am tempted to go.
Morocco has 3500 km of coasts, 9 national parks, 31 medinas, 9 cultural properties listed as UNESCO worlds heritage sites and hundreds of historic monuments. It is a culturally rich and exciting place for tourists.
This African country has been enriched by a variety of ethnicity and religions. The Berber, Arab, African, Muslims, Jewish, Christian make for its diverse cultural traditions and heritage. While Arabic is the chief language, the Berber language Tamazight is also an official language.
If you have a history lover in you, Morocco will charm you with its old culture and character. It is made up of a beautiful blend of African, Arabic and European culture.
While it is home to Sahara deserts, some of the most gorgeous beaches exist here. The landscapes are to die for. The traditional architecture of the mosques, the old houses, Medinas is mesmerizing. It offers captivating panorama, Mediterranean climate, both sea and the mountain, surrendering to the deserts.
The oldest fossils of homo-sapiens were recently found in Morocco.
Rabat is the capital of Morocco. The other popular regions are Tangier, Agadir, Marrakech, Casablanca, Dakhla, Laayoune and the Imperial cities, Quarzazate and Tarfaya. There are the Atlas mountains that you may have read in general knowledge books. The town of Agadir is known for its coastal beauty. The Rif Mountains are amazing. The culture of Kasba and Median are world-popular.
Chefchaouen is the blue city of Morocco. It is known for its blue walls and buildings. The city of Dakhla also has special significance in the history of Morocco. Casablanca is sinly pretty. Overall, Morocco is authentic and is home to one of the biggest living cultures.
A bullet train named AL BORAQ, connects Tangier and Casablanca which covers the distance in 2 hours and 10 minutes instead of 5 hours. It runs at a speed of 320 kmph.
Al Qarawiyyin University of Fes is the oldest University in the world. It was founded in 859 and is still functional.
Moroccans are extremely fond of cinema. They make their own movies too and have a very creative in the space of art, music and films. Our Bollywood connect with Morocco has also been strengthening as some of the famous movies have been shot in some of its gorgeous landscapes.
If you have something to share about Morocco or its food, do drop your comments below. Happy Eating and travelling!!