Souks and Sardines….


I have really been neglecting this blog of mine over the last few weeks. It just seems a combination of sick children; cold weather and life in general have been getting in the way of all my good intentions of cooking and blogging! Enough excuses though…..

 I took a trip down to the Rabat Medina yesterday with my youngest and a friend to go to the fish market. Rabat never feels like a typical coastal town and it is often easy to forget that we are right by the seaside. Fish is a common feature on most menus in Morocco, often served simply fried in a light batter or in a tagine.

 Thursday is carpet souk in the Medina with woman bringing in their wares for auction to the local salesman. It seems to be a complicated system run by a gentleman who walks around in a coat with a lot of shouting going on, as you would expect at an auction. It is one of those times that I really wish I could understand more Arabic to make sense of what exactly it is that goes on. The color of the carpets are just such a feast for the eyes and no matter how many times I walk past there it still seems so exciting! Thank goodness the temptation to buy every carpet I see has been brought under control, more by the lack of financial means than my self control!


 The fish market was fairly quiet today and not much produce in. Weekends are a far better time to go, but I did manage to pick up some odds and ends and a kilogram of sardines for about US $1.30 per kilogram, and they fillet them for you on the spot.


 Sardines are a very popular fish in Morocco and are fairly inexpensive year round. Eating sardines always reminds me of being on holiday! We love them and getting them ready cleaned and filleted is just an extra bonus. I have been wanting to do stuffed sardines for ages after seeing the Sardines stuffed with Bulgar, Currants and Pistachios in the Ottolenghi Cookbook, but felt a bit lazy today so I did these layered in a pie dish with the stuffing on top. It was delicious.


500g filleted sardines (you could also use whole), lightly seasoned with salt and pepper

 ¼ cup bread crumbs (I used a Japanese type, but you could use ciabatta or similar)

2 Tbs Olive Oil + little extra

Zest of 1 orange and the juice of same orange

½ cup chopped flat leaf parsley

1 Tbs crushed garlic

2 Tbs pine nuts

Black pepper


Preheat oven to 220°C

Mix all the topping ingredients together.

Sprinkle a drizzle of olive oil on the base of a glass dish

Layer the sardine fillets in the dish and sprinkle the topping over.

Cook in the preheated oven for about 5-7 minutes, place under the grill for a few seconds to brown if you wish.

 This will serve 4 adults as a starter portion.


Have a wonderful weekend everyone.




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5 Responses to “Souks and Sardines….”

  1. on 11 Dec 2009 at 11:06 am Marisa

    Mmm – great recipe! Reminds of Sicilian style pasta. Do you think this will work with tinned sardines as well?

  2. on 17 Dec 2009 at 11:03 pm Travelingmama

    Oh, thank you so much for the recommendation on the Spanish cookbook. I was looking at them at the English bookstore in Marbella a couple weeks ago and I didn’t like any that I saw. Spanish food is so simple, but most of those cookbooks were making it way to complicated! My husband keeps asking for the dish with eggs over fries, but I cannot remember what it is called! Anyways! I have never ventured into eating fish in Morocco. By the time it arrives to Meknes I’m a little afraid of how long it has been out. But right now with the weather so cool would be the best time to try it! Oh, and I guess since you won’t be able to stop by for tea before I leave you will just have to visit Copenhagen! The culinary atmosphere is wonderful there…. though my husband was most impressed by the bacon wrapped hot dog. I warned him that was a once in a lifetime treat! LOL!

  3. on 21 Dec 2009 at 9:06 pm Holli

    Hi there – just found your blog through one of the expat blog sites. I love the photos and the descriptive text.

    Always been meaning to visit Morocco and definitely will! I’m a Canadian expat, based in Ghana, West Africa for the past 13 years. (There are actually flights between Accra and Casablanca now!).

    Just wanted to let you know I’ll be visiting now – and thought I’d suggest a blog link.

    Please do pay a quick visit to Holli’s Ramblings and let me know if you’d be interested.

    All the best and happy holidays!


    Holli in Accra

  4. on 22 Dec 2009 at 6:06 pm Lynda

    Your photos are gorgeous – love those brightly coloured cloths in the market, too !

  5. on 26 Nov 2010 at 5:05 pm Lucia

    Hi, just wanted to tell you that you’re doing a great job with this blog, the pictures are amazing, you’re lucky to be in one of the most colourful countries of the world!!

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