“Cous cous or tajine?” This is a question you’ll get used to being asked a lot in Morocco. Two of Morocco’s staples almost always on the menu and sometimes the only thing on the menu. Having never been a big fan of cous cous, tajine has been my go-to dish whilst travelling here.
The dish itself is named after the earthenware pot it is cooked in. The pot has two parts, a flat plate with a lip to hold the ingredients and a conical cover that captures the condensation and allows it to flow back down to the dish. The bottom plate doubles as the serving dish. Tajine usually includes meat such as lamb or chicken in combination with a variety of other ingredients: vegetables, fruits, nuts and spices. Everything is placed into the one pot, braised, and slow-cooked at a low-temperature.
The result is meat so tender it is melting off the bone, while all the other additions are packed with amazing flavor from the meat and braising liquid. The natural sweetness of the dried fruits when used, is especially complimentary to the savory flavor of the meat.
A wonderful combination of tenderly-cooked Moroccan flavors, I feel you can’t go wrong with this dish wherever you order it.
If you’re heading to the Hassan II Mosque in Casablanca though, I can recommend an amazing tajine experience within a stone’s throw of this popular landmark. ‘La Sqala‘ is not the expensive restaurant it appears. Enjoy great service and a delicious meal in their quaint courtyard topped with freshly baked bread and an assortment of condiments that will leave you satisfied for many hours to come. For access, see their website.