Our travels across the world of tea have given us a unique perspective. We’ve been able to spend time learning the beauty of diverse cultures. We’ve learned that the world would be a very dull place without the bounty of diversity that we have through the music, food, art and perspectives of a multifarious world. That perspective inspired us to share our experiences in the hopes of expanding an appreciation for cultural variety. Our new blog series entitled “Unity in Community” is an opportunity for us to showcase the wealth and beauty in diversity, celebrate our differences, and bring to light our unity.
Working from our original mission to connect people and to improve lives, we aim to lift up, support and amplify the people behind the music, dance, art and culinary arts that raise our spirits, nourish our bodies and move our souls.
This stop on our virtual world tour is:
Officially named the Kingdom of Morocco, it is a North African country bordering both the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea. Morocco is about the size of California and home to nearly 35 million people. From the fertile plains of the coast to the mountains and valleys in central Morocco, to the dry arid border along the Saharan desert, Morocco is rich in history, culture and cuisine. In Arabic, Morocco is translated as Al Maghreb which means the place where the sun sets.
The food is as vibrant as the culture. Influenced by cultures like the Berbers, the Moors, the Ottoman Empire and the French, it is known for exotic spices and herbs. Noted for its fragrances and flavors, Moroccon food is a savory blend of spices that emphasize cumin, often using it like we use salt. Meals offer little bowls of baba ganoush, marinated olives, hummus and dried fruits and nuts that compliment the preferred Moroccan mint green tea. Dessert is often a decadent platter of marinated Turkish Delight in flavors such as pistachio, pomegranate and rose. Meal time is a time to celebrate family and friends, as there's nothing more important than the closeness of relationships that are honored with good food. Try our recipe for Moroccan Celebration Dates.
Teas from Morocco
The drink of hospitality, good will and harmony is Moroccan Mint Tea. Mint tea has a long history in Morocco. Introduced in the 19th Century by a British Merchant, it was dubbed “gunpower tea” and the moniker stuck. The Moroccans added fresh mint to give it a brighter and sweeter taste. It has become their tea of choice.
The process of preparing mint tea, called atai, traditionally done by the male head of the household, is prepared in front of guests. Tea is served traditionally 3 times a day and is served in ornate tea service sets that include a silver platter. The tea is poured into glasses from a height of 12 inches. The white foam that forms on top is a sign that the tea is ready to drink. No foam means that it must be steeped longer. Very few Moroccans drink alcohol, and the tea has therefore been dubbed “Berber whiskey.” In Moroccan culture, a break for tea is time to slow down, savour the tea and appreciate time with friends and family.
“The first glass is as bitter as life, the second glass is as strong as love, the third glass is as gentle as death.”
“The heart of a fool is in his mouth. The mouth of the wise man is in his heart.”
Enjoy the rhythmic and entrancing sounds of Morocco with our Spotify playlist below.
Bring the tastes and aromas of a distant land to your living room! Host your friends and family for a Moroccan Tea Party at home. Everything you'll need including tips and recipes are found in our free downloadable Moroccan Tea Party Guide.