Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Maqouda: It's complicated

Maqouda (I would put an 'ayn' in there, but it messes up the html, and it won't let me superscript. Those of you who speak Arabic don't need it, and it makes no difference to those of you who don't, so onward ...) is probably my favorite Rabati streetfood. It is a spiced mashed potato mixture that is then battered and fried. The texture of the potato reminds me very much of the knishes at the knish truck near Washington Square Park, but instead of being sliced open and filled with mustard, maqouda are themselves put into something.

The maqouda stands (this picture was taken at my favorite medina maqouda spot, right by where Consuls turns into Ouqassa/runs into Souiqa, for those of you in Rabat) make sandwiches out of quarter, half, or whole loaves of Moroccan round bread. The available fillings (depending on where you go) are maqouda, fried fish, fried egg, roasted bell pepper, fried eggplant, and garnishes of chopped onion and sauces.

What gets me about the enterprise is that to make the maqouda sandwiches, they go to the trouble of making the maqouda, and then when they serve it, they squish the maqouda up in the sandwiches, to spread them out evenly.



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