Well what can I say about Morocco that hasn’t been said in the last half a decade. Morocco and its medinas have been the darling of Instagram & bloggers for quite a while. In early 2019 I got myself road tripping in Morocco to check out what makes it one of the most posted phenomena.
As I said before it’s always difficult to say something new about a country that is spoken about so much. So, I will simply divulge into what my heart felt in this assorted piece of land called Morocco. We landed in Casablanca, drove South to the most popular Marrakech then to Ouarzazate passing a storm in Sahara, then to Fes and Chechaouene in the north and finally drove back full circle to Rabat.
My voyage in this country was full of diverse experiences and heightened feelings. This is a part of the world that is rich of culture, cuisine, color, countryside & chaos. You are in for a fun, unpredictable, and rough ride for sure!
One moment it completely warms your heart with its culture and another moment it can rub you off with some touristy corruption. It’s a trivia, it brightens your eyes with all that color and fills your mind with chaos, at the same time. It smells therapeutic in the lanes where someone is brewing a fresh pot of mint but you are bound to get a smell coma if you pass by a tannery. Out in the terrain it can dust your skin to feel like sand but it will sooth your soul when you look at that striking landscape.
The experience I had in Morocco leaves me with an uncanny likeness with traveling in my own country India. Though they are very different culturally but for a traveler both can be adventurous, overwhelming, captivating or dysfunctional often. You may have a very mixed experience in Morocco, but hey isn’t that the whole fun part of travelling!
Now, calibrating the cuisine of Morocco, I will be as candid as I can. I would start by saying I had a mixed experience on this facet too. But a worth it one! Moroccan cuisine, especially the tagines have gained a lot of popularity. Personally, I was impressed with the Tagine cooking method, as it requires fairly low oil, takes high passive but low active cooking time and tightly packs the flavors of ingredients in the final food output. However, besides Tagine preparations there are fewer options to experiment for vegetarians. Here I would highlight a fact that I stayed in Morocco for over 2 weeks. For almost every meal each day my veggie food option was a veggie tagine prepared more or less in the same style. Sometimes my effort to seek variety could treat me with a veggie salad or tomato sauce pasta. This is where I felt food underwhelmed as compared to what you expect looking at the Moroccan food raving on the internet world.
Actually, I was surprised myself, because while eating in healthy or veggie cafes around the world, I find so many menu options that seem inspired from Moroccan cooking. Fact be told in the more modern cafes in Morocco I did find some amazing salads or contemporary adaptations of Moroccan food. My sense is that the traditional Moroccan cuisine revolves around some key preparations and ingredients. So, while you are constrained in the more conventional areas, expect to find limited variety on the menu as a veggie. Finally, don’t get me wrong, I thoroughly enjoyed those veggie cous cous tagine pots. You can’t skip to taste those thick tagine flavors for a little food dullness.
Besides Morocco’s food experience is not just about the cuisine. Much greatly it is an excursion into the herb and spice souks, discerning some distinct cooking techniques, appreciating the handcraft behind tagines or brass pans and respecting the simplicity of food. I always tend to learn something from the food culture of a country.
In Morocco I observed that spices can be so gentle. It’s all about how you treat them. I truly believe you will reward on a food journey in Morocco. I want to enthuse you to explore this culinary trail through my pictures. These 15 handpicked images are not just about food but depiction of my experience. I don’t want to give you a recommendation list of food things to do in Morocco. I want to request you to make time to live your own food tales in Morocco.
Hope these pictures inspire you!