Moroccan Qadra with courgette and thyme


In the traditional cooking of Fez, courgette and thyme is a seasonal combination cooked Qadra or Kadra style. This recipe has a light sauce/broth called marqa in the Moroccan dialect.

We love this dish when courgette is in season and freshly picked.

We usually cook this recipe in a cooking pot but you can cook it in a tagine. However, I’d stress out that courgettes in this dish pair really well with lamb meat.

Courgettes and lamb tagine can be cooked Mqalli style by adding a hint of garlic in the sauce and a small bouquet of coriander when cooking the meat (use the same recipe below plus these two ingredients).

Lamb and courgettes with fresh and dried thyme

The use of thyme here goes very well will courgette which don’t need to be peeled. Globe courgettes are the best thing to go for here but if they’re not in season, any green courgette will do the job. We use wild dried thyme for this recipe.

Chicken and courgette with dried thyme

You can perfectly make a vegetarian kadra of courgette and thyme by omitting any form of meat.

Serves 4 persons
Prep: 10 min – Cooking : 90- 120 min


  • 600g meat on the bone (lamb/veal cut into chuncks and trimmed of fat or chicken or rabbit)
  • 0.8 – 1 kg of courgettes
  • 1 medium-size yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 to 1 1/2 tsp of ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp of ground white pepper
  • 1/2 tsp of turmeric
  • A pinch of saffron threads
  • 3 tbps of oil
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 tbsp of dried thyme


In a hot pan or a tagine, add oil, meat, salt, turmeric and ginger. Stir.

Fry or slightly sear the meat for a few minutes (do no brown it), then add grated onion and saffron. Add enough water to cover the meat and cover the pot or the tagine.

Wash courgettes and cut into quarters (for globe courgettes) or halve them (for tall courgettes). Once the meat is tender and well cooked, add the courgettes along with thyme. Cover the pot and cook for another 20 min until the courgettes are cooked through.

Reduce the sauce (marka) and serve hot with a good bread.


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