Moroccan spices, a sensory journey of a thousand and one nights
Moroccan spices and Moroccan cuisine: a love affair that has lasted for thousands of years.
They add flavor and give liveliness to the dish, as well as having several beneficial properties. You can find them in couscous, mechoui, desserts and even in drinks! There are so many of them, more than thirty, and they please every taste and palate.
Which are the most commonly used Moroccan spices?
Cumin belongs to the Apiaceae family and is milled or used in seeds. It is one of the main spices in Moroccan cuisine and it is used in the preparation of curry, tajines and couscous. It is usually added at the end of cooking, giving the final spicy touch to the dish. Cumin also has several health benefits, such as aiding digestion.
Also known as the saffron of the Indies, it is a yellow ochre powder. It is harvested and dried in South Asia and then pulverized in Morocco. It has antioxidant, anti-inflammatory properties and it can help with gastric acidity. It is also used as a colouring agent in food and beverages.
Paprika has a mild and spicy flavor at the same time. Its origins are Hungarian, but in Fefla, an appetizer made with peppers, it gives taste and flavor. It is obtained by drying peppers cleaned of the white inner part, then milled to powder. It is used to flavor cheese, meats, vegetables and more. A leading player in Moroccan spices!
It is the most expensive spice in the world, but its ability to enhance any flavour is worth its price. It is used both as a spice and as a dye, leaving a mark with its bright yellow colour. It has a sweet flavour, an unmistakable aroma, and you can find it in appetizers and in dessert. Morocco is the world’s fourth largest producer of saffron, and Tiliouine saffron was Morocco’s first product protected in step with the European PDO.
It is considered the queen of spices and is the oldest of all: cinnamon. It is made from the dried bark of the Lauraceae family and is mainly used in the preparation of sweets and liqueurs. It is a cure-all for the respiratory system, a good antihypertensive and a good antiseptic.
Ginger is a herbaceous plant belonging to the Zingiberaceae family with a slightly spicy and strong aroma. It gives flavour to soups, herbal teas and sauces, as well as being used as an excellent healing remedy for flu and aiding digestion.
The dried fruits of the pepper plant are used as a spice, conferring a strong, bold flavour to first and main courses. Black pepper is one of the best known and most widely used spices in the world. It is excellent for digestion and as a natural antidepressant, as well as aiding nutrient absorption.
CORIANDER OR ARABIAN PARSLEY
Coriander is a plant in the Apiaceae family, and like cumin, is used in the Mediterranean area. Do you prefer a milder flavour? Flavour your dishes with fresh cilantro or do you prefer a stronger flavour? Try the dried variant or its seeds!
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