Orange Blossom & Honey: Magical Moroccan Recipes from the Souks to the Sahara
By John Gregory-Smith
2018, Kyle Books, 978-1-90948-790-1, $29.99 hb.
Reviewed by Tom Verde on May 15, 2019
If you ever tried Moroccan food, then you sampled the cuisines of many cultures. Building upon the foundations of richly spiced Berber and Arab diets, “[e]xiled Moors from Spain brought olive cultivation, citrus fruits, and paprika,” while Moorish Jews introduced pickling and preserving. The Ottomans, with their fondness for fiery grilled meats, added kebabs, while café culture and “an appetite for sophisticated pastries and breads” is a legacy of French colonizers. This book celebrates that mix, with a variety of dishes from all parts of the country. Seffa, a saffron-and-almond-infused chicken braise, is a celebratory dish of desert tribesmen; goat-cheese-and-grapefruit salad hails from the Bouhacem Forest in the north; and rosewater and lemon ricotta cheesecake blends “classic Moroccan fruits and flavors” with “a European style.” Personal stories and lovely illustrations complement the recipes in this enticing cookbook.