Of all the kitchens in all the world, you had to walk into mine
The author is in fact I think Belgian, having been born in Belgium to Moroccan parents. Growing up in Belgium she seems to have avoided chips and mayo, and all the other classic Belgian dishes, and remained in a Moroccan food bubble with her mother cooking, it seems, little else.
She refers to Morocco as ‘her country’ which seems a bit ungrateful to the Belgians, but there’s no doubt she is deeply attached to the country where her parents were born and its cooking traditions. Today, she lives in London and has a popular blog www.mymoroccanfood.com.
North African cooking, like plant -based (or what we use to call ‘vegan’) cookery is very popular right now and with good reason - it’s delicious.
Of course, we tend to think tagine when we think Moroccan; that heady, aromatic stew in its conical pot, but there is so much more. And when you add a little Western cuisine into the mix, the possibilities expand enormously.
Nargisse’s recipes are wide-ranging and lip-smacking, Berber Breakfast Eggs, Orange blossom, beetroot and goats’ cheese galette, sticky ras le hanout and peach short ribs. Merguez burger with preserved lemon guacamole plus a whole range of exciting desserts
She calls her recipes ‘Moroccan with a twist’ and she likes to experiment with new techniques and new ingredients.
For example, buttermilk, the beloved chicken tenderiser of the USA, is rarely used in Morocco, but she uses it for her chicken kebabs as well as cumin and buttermilk cornbread.
And taking inspiration from Italian stuffed squid, she Moroccanises hers with a merguez style mix of lamb and beef.
It’s all rather delicious that’s for sure with excellent photography and will add to the popularity of North African food at home at a time when the food of the Middle East, which is similar, is steadily gaining popularity on the high street.
Get your harissa ready, this is a hot book to have on your shelf.
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