One of my favourite things about visiting other countries or regions is sampling the local cuisine and delicacies. Over the Easter holidays I took a trip to the beautiful city of Marrakech, Morocco. One of the things I was looking forward to most before visiting this country was the food. Moroccan food is famous for its colours, intense flavours and of course the way it is presented in beautifully handcrafted pots.
During my stay in Marrakech I was a regular visitor to the local Souks. The souks are bursting with every item imaginable. For me, the items I was desperate to pick up were the beautifully crafted colourful bowls and the spices. After sampling the spices in the local restaurants I was keen to bring some back home so I could attempt to recreate the flavoursome dishes I had devoured when I was there. In standard Amy fashion, I went overboard with the collection of delicacies I brought back with me, every spare nook and cranny in my case was home to a bag of spi ce mix or a bag of traditional Moroccan tea. Not surprisingly, when I opened my case I found my clothes had a slight Moroccan spice smell to them after the flight.
This recipe is a bit of a ‘throw it all together’ kind of attempt but the minute I put a spoon into my mouth the flavours transport me back to Morocco. During my trip ate a lot of lentils, carrots, aubergines, chickpeas and courgettes in separate tapas style dishes. As a massive salad fan I decided to try and create my own ‘Moroccan Salad’ using all the products I had eaten there. This dish is absolutely perfect if you lead a bit of a hectic lifestyle and you want something that will last a couple of days. It can be eaten hot or cold so it is perfect for a packed lunch or even as a side tapas dish to compliment a larger meal.
How To Make It
The first thing you need to do is get your quinoa and lentils on to boil as this can take around 20/25 minutes. I added a little bit of Rice Vinegar to the water mixture to add a little extra bit of flavour. While the lentils and quinoa is boiling get started on chopping the aubergine and courgette into small cubes and finely grate the carrot. One you have got everything chopped into small pieces, using a teaspoon of coconut oil on a low heat sauté the mixture together in a frying pan. While these are cooking you have time to prepare the sauce and the additional cold ingredients that you are going to add to the salad. For the sauce, you want to add 4/5 tablespoons of rice vinegar, 1 tablespoon of cumin, 2 tablespoons of Moroccan spice mix, 1 teaspoon of cinnamon, the juice of half a lemon and a little water. The flavour of the sauce really depends on your personal preference, you could add more or less of the listed ingredients depending on your taste buds. The final task you need to do is cut a red onion into small cubs, remove the seeds of the pomegranate, 4 tablespoons of cooked Chickpeas and depending on what you prefer finely cut dates or you can use raisins.
Once the hot items are all cooked through the last thing you need to do it throw it all together. Taaaadaaaa…a Moroccan Style Salad ready in 3 simple steps!!
What You Need
2 Carrots Grated
½ Red Onion
1 Cup of Lentils
1 Cup of Quinoa
Handful of Dates/Raisins
Handful of Almonds
4 Tablespoons of Chickpeas
1 Tablespoon of Cumin
4 Tablespoons of Moroccan Spice
1 Teaspoon of Cinnamon