Category Archives: Moroccan

Moroccan Specialties

My interview on Pink Pangea

This lovely travel site bills itself as a travel site for women.

Very interesting and informative, and they published an interview about Mint Tea and Minarets: a banquet of Moroccan memories

Published on Pink Pangea on December 31, 2015 at this link:

The Kasbah Chronicles November 2015


 Clkshp 4

Chef David Thorne of Elysian restaurant in Glendale, CA


In need of “comfort food” I broke my tradition of basting a turkey inside and out with PRESERVED LEMON PULP to prepare a TURKEY COUSCOUS from Mint Tea and Minarets: a banquet of Moroccan Memories (page 221, CH 22). Couscous= a balm for the soul.

And then came Paris. We remained glued to the television, as was the rest of the world. To paraphrase my French friends and relatives: “We must go on as usual, or we allow THEM to win. “ The world’s response to the catastrophe reached San Diego, where Susan McBeth of Aventures by the Book ( put together a Je Suis Paris benefit event in barely 6 days, and raised over $5,000 for the Croix Rouge Française. Merci Susan, and merci, author Jen Coburn (, for co-organizing.

In honor of the victims, hold on to your hankies and listen to this:

     I got a break from mulling over current events with an invitation to “chat” at Kan Ya Ma Kan, a dinner organized by Clockshop ( to celebrate the food, culture, and music of Morocco’s Sephardic Jews. Chef David Thorne, who heads the adjoining Elysian restaurant ( shares the airy space with Clockshop in a former warehouse nestled among ancient buildings perched on the banks of the LA River in Glendale, CA. I licked my own chops with Chef David’s rendition of my Tagine of Duck with Prunes and Caramelized Persimmons in honey sauce!

News from Morocco: An ancient DATE crop is making a comeback:

Figuig: A troubled home for, AZIZA, Morocco’s rarest date variety.Very interesting paper written by a young intern at the High Atlas Foundation, an organization of Morocco Peace Corps returnees.

 Incroyable mais vrai! Morocco is thinking about BANNING the use of plastic shopping bags.

Anyone who has traveled in Morocco, or other developing countries (and, for that matter, parts of the California desert) bemoans the unsightly trash that makes these areas “bloom.” My husband and I refer to the fields littered with ubiquitous black plastic bags, “fields of flowers,” when we encounter them along Moroccan roads.

How ironic that this is a prevalent sight in countries that produce such wonderful artisanal straw baskets.

Irony 1: I have used the SAME Moroccan baskets for over 30 years!

Irony 2: WE end up purchasing these same imported straw goods at US farmer’s markets.

SACS PLASTIQUES – Interdiction par le parlement marocain

La Chambre des représentants a adopté à l’unanimité, le projet de loi n° 77-15 portant sur l’interdiction de la fabrication, l’importation, l’exportation, la commercialisation et l’utilisation des sacs en plastique.

MORE good news from Morocco:

It is among the safest countries to visit, says the British Foreign Office. Let’s keep our fingers and toes crossed.

Le Maroc parmi les pays les plus sûrs au monde, selon le Foreign Office. (“Morocco among the safest countries in the world,” according to the Foreign Office.) The British government encourages its citizens to visit.

“Le Maroc figure en bonne place dans le classement 2015 des pays les plus sûrs au monde établi par le Foreign Office, aux côtés de pays européens et d’Amérique du Nord, rapporte “Le360“. La Grande-Bretagne déconseille à ses citoyens le voyage dans pas moins de 60 pays, principalement ceux de la Région du Moyen-Orient et d’Afrique du Nord, dont la Tunisie frappée l’été dernier par une vague d’attentats terroristes . . . Seule exception de la Région MENA, le Maroc est classé par le Foreign-Office parmi les pays les plus sûrs au monde. «Toutes les régions du royaume sont sûres», assure le Foreign Office, conseillant les ressortissants britanniques de s’y rendre sans s’inquiéter le moins du monde. MarocZone

New FRANGLAIS word for you to ponder:

” le startuppeur de l’année” en Afrique et au Maroc . . . Les projets primés recevront le label Startuppeur de l’année 2015 . . .

Question: Are you acquainted with any startappeurs?

San Diego Living Show, Channel 6, NOV. 2015

This link to San Diego’s Channel 6, the CW, San Diego Living should be accessible until December 2015, I hope.

It was great fun on

Monday, November 9, 2015

San Diego Living, 9AM

Mint Tea and Minarets

Please insert the link in your browser if you can’t access it here.

It is worth it! Heather, from Channel 6, was a most gracious host. We had fun!


Recipes from San Diego Living, SD Channel 6, Nov. 9th, 2015 TV appearance

November 9, 2015


From Mint Tea and Minarets: a Banquet of Moroccan Memories

(La Caravane, 2013)

Egg Tagine with Olives

Serves 4

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 medium onions, very finely diced

1 (14¼-ounce) can diced tomatoes, drained

½ teaspoon sugar

10 green or purple olives, rinsed, pitted, and coarsely chopped

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 bay leaf

8 eggs

1 tablespoon chopped cilantro

2 teaspoons ground cumin

1 tablespoon mashed preserved lemon pulp (optional)

Freshly ground pepper

Fresh cilantro leaves for garnish

BAGUETTE slices, for serving


In a tagine or medium skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat. Cook onions, stirring occasionally, until light brown, 8 to 10 minutes. Add tomatoes, sugar, olives, garlic, and bay leaf. Mash lightly with a fork. Reduce heat to low and simmer until tomatoes thicken somewhat, 15 to 20 minutes. Discard bay leaf. Set aside half of this mixture for garnish.

In a bowl, beat eggs, cilantro, cumin, preserved lemon pulp, and pepper. Add to tomato mixture. Cook, stirring gently, until eggs are not quite set. Garnish with the reserved tomato mixture and cilantro. Serve immediately with crusty bread.

 From Cooking at the Kasbah: Recipes from my Moroccan Kitchen (Chronicle Books, 1999)

now in its  tenth printing


Moroccan Squash with Caramelized Onions

(serves 4)


1 lb Mediterranean pumpkin or butternut squash

2 large onions, thinly sliced

1/4 C olive oil

2 tsp ground cinnamon

2 T sugar

Salt and pepper to taste

1/2 C raisins, plumped in warm water and drained

1/4 C slivered almonds, toasted


Place unpeeled squash in baking dish and bake at 350 degrees F until soft, about 1 hour. Let cool. Peel and cut into serving pieces and place in baking dish.


Cook the onions in the oil, with the cinnamon, sugar, salt, and pepper, until very soft, about 15 minutes. Add the raisins and cook 5 minutes longer. Spread the mixture over the squash, cover with foil, and return to the oven to heat for 20 minutes.

Extra! Kasbah Chronicles, November 2015

Rain! Sun! Santa Anas in November! Ocean water at 70 degrees, also  in November? El Nino is really rearing its head! All I can say at this moment, is that I still do a little rain dance when water actually FALLS FROM THE SKY! My sweet Scottie, Olive, now 12 years old, doesn’t quite understand the phenomenon, and hates to get her paws wet. So much for a dog whose ancestors ran around the Moors.

But enough weatherspeak. I need to let you know about my upcoming classes and appearances.

KITTY ON SAN DIEGO TV! If you are channel surfing on Monday, November 9th, click on CHANNEL 6, San Diego’s CW: I will be preparing dishes with a Moroccan touch on San Diego Living between 9 and 10AM. The program might be live streamed, and will be available for viewing 30 minutes after the show ends.

If you would like to request the recipes from the show, send me an email at

I am participating in other special events this month:

November 14, 2015. 1-3PM

Demonstration and Book Signing

Le Creuset Company Store

5600 Paseo del Norte

Carlsbad CA 92008


TUESDAY, November 17, 2015. 7PM

Easy Side Dishes for Thanksgiving

(classes limited to 12 and fill up quickly!)

The Spice Way

260-B N El Camino real

Encinitas, CA

(760) 634-9709



November 21, 2015. 7-11PM


Kan Ya Ma Kan 2015 (Once Upon a Time)

A Traditional Sephardic menu (Kitty’s recipes) prepared by chef David Thorne, followed by a concert of Andalusian music. Book signing too!

Last year’s event sold out!


2806 Clearwater St

Los Angeles, CA 90039 (aka Frogtown)


t: 323.522.6014

Tickets sell out early!

“. . .  three weekends celebrating food, music and culture of the non-Ashkenazi Jewish diaspora. Last year we focused on Syria, Iraq and Tunisia and North Africa. This year we are focusing on Iran, Morocco and Spain. Clockshop is a multifaceted arts organization that works at the intersection of cultural production, politics, and urban space. We produce projects by contemporary visual and performing artists and program events, screenings, and conversations. We are especially interested in bringing people together to share in the strange particularities of our hometown, Los Angeles, and in the global creative practices and politics that influence us.”

The event is being held in an area of LA I had never heard of called FROGTOWN:

Notes the LA Times: “The tiny, 8,800-person community known colloquially as Frogtown suddenly is impossible to ignore. (Its official name, Elysian Valley, is rarely used.) Artists Shepard Fairey, Mark Grohjahn and Thomas Houseago recently opened studios there. Nomad Art Compound, a sort of hybrid print shop/commune, has established itself as one of the weirdest and coolest venues in L.A. Frogtown’s annual arts festival, the Frogtown Art Walk. . .”

EDIBLE FLOWERS: A KITCHEN COMPANION On a slow boat from CHINA, should be here by the end of November. If you want to order ahead:

I will ship signed copies in the US until December 18th, 2015, so you can have them in time for the holidays. I will happily bundle multiple copies. You can pay me via Paypal or by check. I can take credit cards over the phone (I am learning to use my new SQUARE on my iPhone.) For International shipping, please send me a note.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Make your stuffing with couscous

Recipe in Mint Tea and Minarets!!