Flickr photo of the day: The spice merchant

Michael Clemmer
Compass

Considered one of the most important in the world, Moroccan cuisine is all about herbs and spices. Whether it is simple couscous with barbecued meat (of Berber origin) or delicate pastilla pastry filled with pigeon meat and fried almonds (from the Moors of Andalusia, Spain), it requires a trip to see the spice merchant.

His tiny shop is a virtual olfactory amusement park, redolent of dried ginger, cumin, cloves, chilies, paprika and rich black pepper. There will also be anise, thyme, mint and dozens of other magic powders and leaves, all in grand quantities. Yet there’s more: there’s shiba (absinthe) to sip on while plucking pigeons and orange flower water to make muhallabiya (almond cream pudding). The spice merchant will have it all.

Photo of spice merchant in Fez, Morocco, by Paolo Cinque.

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