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The cuisine of Morocco has always been rated some of the best food around the world. The use of spices, colors, and the textures in dishes is what makes Moroccan food so unique. There are few places where food is more carefully and artistically prepared, more delightfully served, and more enjoyed than in this country. Moroccan food is a combinations of Arab, Berber, Moorish, Middle Eastern, Mediterranean African, Iberian, and Jewish influences.

  • Morocco's many home-grown fruits and vegetables include oranges, melons, tomatoes, sweet and hot peppers, and potatoes.
  • Five more native products that are especially important in Moroccan cooking are lemons, olives, figs, dates, and almonds.
  • Located on the coast of the Mediterranean Sea, the country is rich in fish and seafood. Beef is not plentiful, so meals are usually built around lamb or poultry.
  • Flat, round Moroccan bread is eaten at every meal.
  • The Moroccan national dish is the tajine, a lamb or poultry stew. Other common ingredients may include almonds, hard-boiled eggs, prunes, lemons, tomatoes, and other vegetables.
  • The tajine, like other Moroccan dishes, is known for its distinctive flavoring, which comes from spices including saffron, cumin, coriander, cinnamon, ginger, and ground red pepper.
  • The tajine's name is taken from the distinctive earthenware dish with a cone-shaped top in which it is cooked and served.
  • Another Moroccan dietary staple is couscous, made from fine grains of a wheat product called semolina. It is served many different ways, with vegetables, meat, or seafood.

Chicken Tajine with Almonds and Prunes (serves 10-12)

Ingredients

  • 6 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon sat
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon powdered cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon powdered ginger
  • ½ teaspoon powdered saffron (optional)
  • 3 short cinnamon sticks
  • 4 ounces butter
  • 2 large onions
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1 strip lemon peel
  • 1 pound dried prunes
  • Blanched almonds
  • Fresh watercress or mint

Procedure

  1. Combine the oil and ground spices in a large bowl.
  2. Cut the chicken into cubes and chop the onion finely. Put the chicken and onion into the bowl with the oil and spices. Combine well and let stand for 30 minutes.
  3. Melt the butter in a large skillet. Add the chicken, searing (browning) them lightly on all sides.
  4. Add any remaining marinade and enough water to cover. Simmer until chicken is tender (about 30 minutes).
  5. While the chicken is cooking, put the prunes in a small saucepan, cover with water and bring the water to a bowl. Remove the pan from the heat and let them stand for 20 minutes.
  6. Drain the prunes, return them to the pan, and ladle a little liquid from the meat pan over the prunes. Simmer the prunes for 5 minutes.
  7. Add the lemon peel, cinnamon sticks, and half the sugar to the prunes.
  8. Stir the remaining sugar into the meat.
  9. Arrange the meat on a serving platter. Add the prunes to the meat, and pour the sauce from the prunes over the meat and prunes.
  10. Boil the remaining liquid from the meat rapidly to reduce it by half and pour over the meat and prunes.
  11. Melt a small amount of butter in a saucepan and brown the almonds lightly. Garnish the tajine with the almonds and watercress or mint.
  12. Serve with rice or couscous.











For more Information on Morocco's foods and for recipes go to :

http://www.foodbycountry.com/Kazakhstan-to-South-Africa/Morocco.html