By Rania Tazi
By Rania Tazi
Casablanca – Muslims around the world observe the holy month of Ramadan, making way for similar customs to be shared globally, such as Tarawih or volunteering.
Each country, however, has a different “iftar,” which is the breakfast meal, and what Moroccans call the “ftour.” Each country has foods that people cannot do without during the ftour time.
Here are 10 essential ftour foods in Morocco:
Harira or soup
A tradition for Moroccans, Harira is a soup that is an essential to Ramadan. It is made with garbanzo beans, lentils, fresh vegetables, spices, and sometimes beef. It is not very commonplace to eat harira outside of Ramadan, but during the holy month its popularity soars.
But Harira may also be replaced with “soupe chinoise” or any other soup at ftour tables.
Hard boiled eggs
Eggs are a main part of the breakfast table as they are a rich source of protein; however they have to be hard-boiled. They are eaten with salt and cumin.
The Prophet Mohammed (PBUH) was said to break his fast with a few dates or water, therefore, dates are essential for ftour tables around the world.
Mint tea, or “atay bi na3na3” in Darjia, is a staple of the Moroccan lifestyle year round. It is made with mint leaves and tea grains, and people can either drink it very sweet or without sugar at all, depending on their tastes. Mint tea is essential to the ftour table and appears to complement most foods.
During Ramadan, milk is very common. It is rich in calcium and is a good addition to a healthy diet after fasting all day.
Especially during summer months, juice is refreshing and tastes amazing. During Ramadan, creativity flows and one can find a juice for every taste.
Baghrir and/or Msemen
The baghrir is an ancient Berber “pancake” that originated in North Africa and is today very popular in Morocco. It is small, round and spongy, made with flour or semolina, and characterized by its tiny holes. During the ftour, it is most often eaten with a warm mixture of honey and butter.
Like the baghrir, the msemen is another type of “pancake” popular in Morocco at all times of the year; although sometimes described as a pancake, its consistency mostly resembles that of bread and is also eaten with a warm mixture of honey and butter. Without it, the ftour table is incomplete.
Both baghrir and msemen are complemented with mint tea.
Another sweet on the ftour table is chebakia. It is a deep-fried pastry made of strips of dough. It’s then rolled to look like a rose and coated with honey and sesame. It is of Moroccan origin and differs in name from city to city.
Similar to harira, chebakia is extremely popular during Ramadan but not in other months.
Fruit is important to the ftour as it provides the necessary sugar and fiber after an entire day of fasting, and also helps us feel full earlier to prevent overeating.
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