Cafe Tajine in the Mountains of Morocco

Ourika, Morocco

 

547357_3665455120320_1240248596_nThough only 6 hours (460 km) separate Marrakech from the oasis town of M’Hamid I could have dedicated six days between the two place names. The villages that scatter Ourika Valley hold their own against the more popular Imperial Cities (Marrakech, Fes, Meknes and Rabat) and it’s out here in the wilderness of the High Atlas Mountains that I come across the Cafe Tajine.

An hour outside Marrakech the Cafe Tajine emerges from an icy riverbed along the narrow road that parallels the River Ourika. Makeshift bridges of repurposed woods and carpets reach across the river at many points along the route, leading to mud-brick villages, markets, and, in this case, one of the finest dining experiences i’ve had to date. 

Here, for a few dollars (it’s truly a steal), you can feast like royalty. A spread of three tajines, salads, breads, mint tea, and a few beggars in between will cost you around the same price as the new Jay-Z album.

Tajines are made to order and, like most “Old World” recipes can take a good deal of time to cook. This is when the industrious locals strike. Peddling handmade goods, women and children make offers on African keepsakes and jewelry boxes, even crystals, as men serenade us, strumming the guitar-like Moroccan sintir and playing unusual flutes and drums.

Over the melodious North Africa beats we dine late into the night, taking our sweet time, dancing and haggling away.

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Yallah bye

About Nicholas Andriani

In 2012 I bought a one-way ticket to Casablanca, Morocco, sold my car, picked up an Arabic dictionary and enrolled in an archaeological field school in the Middle East. As a student of archaeology, driven by the desire to see every inch of this planet (borders and politics be damned), I set out to get to the bottom of who I am and what I want from this world. Traveling mostly on foot I hitchhiked around North Africa, hiked Spain’s Mediterranean coast , caught a plane to Egypt where I wandered across Sinai into the Middle East and settled in Jordan, living amongst Bedouin and colleagues working on an excavation. Intrigued by the crisis in Syria I began tagging along with journalists, who were anticipating the extreme force that was to come, before making my way into Palestine and Israel where I found a land cloaked in obscurity and experienced a full paradigm shift. Landlocked I caught a plane to Greece and roamed the ancient landscapes, island-hopping my way to Turkey. Experienced the best of Byzantium, Constantinople, and Istanbul. And with one final burst of energy, found my way back home to the States.This is my story, and those to come. Posts are not sorted chronologically, rather they find their way to the blogosphere when I feel it’s high time they make their debut. Between travels i’ll be working on my first book. A memoir titled “Yallah, Bye“ in which i’ll recount my wild days abroad during the Arab spring. Finding love, loss, and culture shock a way of life, a right of passage. I’ll be diving into anthropology, foodie nonsense, history, and daily life of the worlds I had the good fortune to visit. Thanks for taking your time to visit my page and be sure to say “hello”! -Nicholas Andriani
This entry was posted in Africa, Anthropology, Backpacking, Blogging, City Guide, Culture, Food, foodie, gastronome, Gastronomia, Gastronomy, Hiking, Morocco, Road Trip, Travel, travel writing and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

13 Responses to Cafe Tajine in the Mountains of Morocco

  1. Wow. Some journey through the whole of your blog.
    I enjoyed every post (almost as much as if I was travelling with you.
    Thanks for sharing…
    Vicki

  2. Really like your blog so I’ve nominated you for a Liebster Award. Here’s the information and Good Luck! http://theroadtonewbery.wordpress.com/2014/02/01/getting-noticed-its-nice/

  3. My mouth is watering at the look of the food! I see all the chairs are facing one direction in your second photo. Was there something to see while eating?

  4. Khai says:

    Oh man, all the food really made me drool. I bet it will make us very full.

  5. Oh, I remeber loving Moroccan Tajine on numerous occasions when visiting and travelling through Morocco some 1,5 year ago. So delicious when done properly by locals. Thank you for the great post which reminded me of great times.
    Here are some of mine on Morocco (Maybe you recognize some parts :-):
    http://psychosomaticallyinlove.wordpress.com/2013/10/30/an-eery-kasbah-in-morocco/
    http://psychosomaticallyinlove.wordpress.com/2013/10/30/a-road-in-morocco/
    http://psychosomaticallyinlove.wordpress.com/2013/10/30/marrakech-colourful-slippers/

  6. swabby429 says:

    The food looks absolutely scrumptious.

  7. tgeriatrix says:

    Great blog! The food looks yummy!

  8. Pingback: Blogger of the Week – Nicholas Andriani of Yallah Bye « Dancing with Fireflies

  9. Jess Carey says:

    Amazing photos, and love how real they make it all looked!

  10. Wow! What a truly magical meal. You’re able to capture these experiences beautifully with your words and photos. I think your book will be fabulous.

  11. This all looks delicious! Places like these are often the best places in the world to eat.

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