Slurping Down a Dozen Oualidia Oysters
The seaside village of Oualidia is home to Morocco's oyster farming industry, established back in 1957. Nowadays more than 200 tons of oysters are harvested annually, most of them consumed domestically. Moroccans and visitors can be seen shucking and slurping down oysters' fleshy insides all along the Atlantic coast and often within the fine-dining establishments of other inland centers.
Eating Your Way Through Tagine Fatigue
It's the national dish and is the name for both the two-piece clay cooking vessel and the resulting meal. Spend any length of time in Morocco, and you'll become just like everybody else -- a discerning tagine connoisseur. Suffering from bouts of tagine fatigue can be countered by discovering delicious variations from the norm, such as lamb tagine with dates and figs, chicken tagine with apricot in saffron sauce, and a vegetable tagine that isn't one big mass of overcooked mush.
Trying Couscous by Hand
The centerpiece of most sit-down meals in Morocco is couscous. Fine, grain-size pieces of semolina lightly steamed in an aromatic broth until light and fluffy, couscous can be served with any meat or vegetable, or a combination of both. When dining with Moroccans, you'll be encouraged to scoop up a handful -- use your "clean" right hand -- and roll it into a small ball before tossing it into your mouth. This is one of the main reasons why most dinner tables in Morocco are covered with plastic -- and easily cleaned -- tablecloths.
Pouring Your Mint Tea Without Spilling a Drop
It's the national drink -- jokingly described to Westerners as "Moroccan whiskey" -- and is available anywhere, anytime. Traditionally brewed slowly over a charcoal fire and sweetened by large chunks of sugar, the tea is poured from an arm's length height to aerate the brew. This is to be performed two to three times -- and tasted after each pour -- before the tea is considered ready to drink.
The Freshest Seafood
In comparison to most Western countries, Morocco's seafood is very reasonably priced with a relatively healthy range of daily catches. Feast on the freshest seafood -- handpicked by yourself and chargrilled while you wait -- at various fish markets and restaurants throughout the country.
A Breakfast Baghrir Smothered in Amlou
A baghrir is an aerated pancake, similar to a large English crumpet. Moroccans and visitors alike drool over a baghrir (still warm from the pan) covered in the argan-based amlou paste and topped with crushed cashew nuts.
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