M is for Marrakech

Marrakech, also known as Marrakesh, is one of the imperial cities of Morocco.

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Here in Adelaide, it is known as the Hyde Park Moroccan restaurant.  The frontage is quite normal, but once you enter in, you are transported into another world..from stars on the ceiling to atmospheric music in the background and, my favourite part, waiters carrying around Moroccan Tagine dishes with pointed covers, which are clay dishes that the food is cooked in.

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We were promptly served with water and the menu. Most of the mains are Tagine’s, and that’s what you should order! With a party of 6, we each ordered separate mains, with a entree of a mixed platter of dips and a side of cous cous and saffron rice.

Also, if you order their special tea ($4 a cup – slightly on the expensive side as there was no refills), the waiters would personally come and pour it out for your in an elaborate way.  The waiter was kind enough to re-do it as I wanted to take a picture 😀 Here it is:

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Entree

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The mixed dips platter ($20) – eggplant, carrot, spinach and beetroot – was a great way to kick off the meal. The carrot and beetroot dips were refreshingly sweet (I loved the bits of coriander floating around adding another fresh element), the eggplant one left a taste of smokiness in the mouth but was tasty, and the spinach had strong flavours. I found the carrot one really set my appetite for the mains!

The mains slowly made their way to us after a longer than expected wait, but it was worth it.  Steaming hot Tagine dishes came one by one as the dish is very hot, so don’t touch it ( like I did as I was curious..).

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First one was the Afrah tagine ($31.90), which is lamb cooked until it breaks apart in beautiful pieces, flavoured with cinnamon, honey, prunes, roasted nuts and sprinkled with sesame seeds. My partner enjoyed the flavours (besides the prunes, which are quite sweet if you are not a big fan) but found there wasn’t enough sauce to eat with teh lamb as he got half way as the rice soaked it up.

wpid-imag2577.jpgThis one is Marrakech’s Signature Seafood Tagine ($40).  It came with an array of seafood including scallops and mussels, cooked in a delicious sauce that was aromatic, spiced and had an intensity of flavour. I would order this on my next visit!

wpid-imag2581.jpgI ordered the Samak Tagine ($38), a fresh fish fillet cooked with sharmoula and vegatbles including pumpkin, carrot, zucchini and I think..bitter gourd. The sauce/broth was delicious and I loved mopping it up with the Moroccan bread! Mmmm.. the bitter gourd surprised me as it’s not one of my favourites, but my partner’s mother enjoyed it! The fish itself was very generous in size, and fish nicely cooked. Probably more cooked than how I like my fish normally, as some parts were slightly dry. Still very tasty, but I do like the seafood sauce a lot more.

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The saffron rice set us back $7, which we found expensive as we probably don’t know how to appreciate the expense of ‘saffron’. The bread we loved! Soft, delicious, perfect for mopping up the delicious sauces of the tagines.

Overall, amazing food, friendly service and a wonderful experience. The only niggle would be the slightly higher prices per mains – expect $26 – 40, unless you take advantage of the Split Bill vouchers in the Advertiser, like we did, and get half price off the mains! So definite winner for us.

If you don’t have the split bills and are money conscious (but want some good Moroccan food), I suggest ordering mains to share (so not one each) as they are extremely filling!!!

Grade A for the delicious food and value (due to split bill :))

the Alphabet of Food..

 

 

 

 

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