It’s funny how quickly and how slowly two weeks of immersive, chaotic, and overwhelmingly glorious travel can pass. And how here I am, back at my kitchen table on the other side of it all, with reflections replacing anticipations, a deep longing to time travel to even 24 hours ago, standing in the shadow of Casablanca’s Hasan II Mosque, and how pleasantly calm and nestled I feel being back home-back at my kitchen table.
Andrew and I traveled to and explored Morocco with his parents as a massive and cumulative celebration of their 70th birthdays and our one year wedding anniversary. I’m not entirely sure what I’d expected- classwork was apparently too taxing to give it much thought (aka I did zero research)- spices, colors? My ignorant daydreams weren’t too far off; Morocco -every dusty fading village, every cumbersome djellaba, every weathered and time beaten donkey- was breathtaking. Every grain of sand had history, was special. Casablanca, Fes, Marrakech, Skoura, Meknes, the Sahara.. each so fundamentally different from each other, from everything I’d ever experienced. Every color was new, life changing. Morocco was exhausting, offensively, beautifully, and passionately religious and outright bizarre; vividly weathered.
You must go.
Cucumber and Fennel Salad with Avocado [makes 4 servings]
Ironically this salad is anything but Moroccan, but being home, and away from the allures of turmeric and cumin, this is all I craved. A light, raw, simple simple earthy salad. A reset button. I will be posting and sharing more about the experience (photographs, recipes..) – though I desperately wanted to share my fresh impressions- excuse the haze of jet-lag!
1 large fennel bulb
2 large cucumbers, cubed medium
juice & zest of 1 lemon
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 ripe avocado, peeled, pit removed, and sliced thin
¼ cup sliced almonds
salt & pepper to taste
Fennel Bulb Preparation:
Remove the fronds from the fennel bulb stalks, set aside.
Finely chop the fennel bulb’s stalks, set aside.
Cut the fennel bulb in half, cut out the tough core, and finely slice.
In a large bowl, toss fennel fronds, stalks, and bulb with cubed cucumber, lemon juice, lemon zest and olive oil until well combined.
Top with avocado and sliced almonds, then season to taste. Enjoy!
Nutrition Information [per serving]
190 Calories, 13g Carbohydrates, 15.5g Fat, 3.3g Protein, 5.3g Fiber, 2.6g Sugar