Moroccan avocado juice

Moroccan avocado juice

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Moroccan avocado juice is one of Moroccan street food fixes that you can order in any coffee shop or Mahlabas (dairy shop).

It’s been a great breakfast option for many of us when we had to rush to school and no time to sit for a breakfast.

For those on the go, they would stop at a dairy shop and grap one chilled avocado drink. It really fills one in and its proper fuel for a busy morning!

Moroccan avocado juice served in a dairy shop

Moroccan avocado juice. Credit @Nada Kiffa

A weird combo?

Although I prefer avocado on the savoury side (in a salad) and I find the avocado juice a bit heavy for my stomach, I still take a sip or two whenever I get the chance to find one in front of me. Then I ask for more, then I finish the whole glass..

When I lived in Qatar, I found a Lebanese Juicing shop selling this and I wondered if this was also found in Lebanon? Apparently yes, on its basic side (avocado, sugar and milk).

I’ve seen some shocked faces when I mentioned the avocado juice option to them. Then I discovered that warm avocado toasts and warm avocado recipes being a common thing in California. I found that shocking. I thought that was weirder! How do we define weirdness anyway?

I still can’t pass beyond the idea that avocado can’t be eaten warm or hot, but I’m sure I’ll do it one day. I might be missing on something! It might become my second favourite after my beloved avocado/shrimp combo…

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Moroccan avocado juice

Moroccan avocado juice is one of Moroccan street food fixes that you can order in any coffee shop or Mahlaba (dairy shop). It's also one the body builders' favourite drink before the protein shakes became a thing!

  • 500 gram avocado (roughly chopped)
  • 50 gram sugar (or honey, to taste. Optional)
  • 1 Liter milk (chilled)

Optional additions

  • 1 tsp orange blossom water (optional)
  • 4 dates (meaty ones, )
  • 3 tbsp almonds (raw, skin on)
  1. Blend everything in a liquidizer. Add more milk for a thinner texture.

  2. Serve chilled and drink within 15 min. 

 


Moroccan lemonade/citronnade with vanilla ice cream, perfect for summer days

Moroccan lemonade/citronnade with vanilla ice cream, perfect for summer days

This post is full of emotions for many reasons. First and foremost, Lemonade and ice cream juice has always meant to me a trip with my father to R’cif (a section of the old Medina in Fez) and a stop at this old Fassi juices and nibble shop.

Call this joint a coffee shop, call it Mahlaba, it was all in one. Located in a corner just before you hit the nougat folks with their amazing display.. I was in heaven.

Moroccan lemonade/citronnade with vanilla ice cream, perfect for summer days

Moroccan lemonade/citronnade with vanilla ice cream. Credit @Nada Kiffa

So yes, it was a father and daughter trip to the world of treats.

Now my father is gone and so is the old man in the picture, after my dad as it seems.

I crossed that shop a few times since. I just could not order anything from it. Actually I never ordered anything beside that lemonade, now that I think of it. They were also selling almond briouates and sbiaats which are reputed to be better if homemade.

Morocco is a heavy producer of citrus fruits, mostly oranges, lemons (many varieties) and bitter orange, hence the abundance of orange blossom water. Fez’s lemons are particularly sweeter as compared to other areas in Morocco due to the rich dark soil and water found in that area, and so are many other fruits and vegetables.

Everyone has a recipe of lemonade and it’s a common homemade drink across the Mediterranean countries. Some like it sweeter than others and some like it more lemony than others.

However, we do prefer to zest the lemon and keep the zest in the lemon juice and sugar mix to macerate for a few hours before mixing with water and sifting.

The days went by and my mother started making a lot of this lemon/sugar/zest mix and freeze it in flattened plastic bags, which makes it available even when lemon becomes expensive or less juicy.

Ingredients
Serves 2
Prep: 10 min – Chilling: at least 3 hours. 

For the lemonade

  • About 600 ml of water
  • 60 – 100 ml of lemon juice (depending on how strong you like it)
  • Zest from the juiced lemons, preferably unwaxed and organic
  • 100 g of caster sugar (adjust to your taste)

For serving

  • 2 big scoops of vanilla ice cream

Preparation

Homemade lemonade

Like mentioned above, the most demanding part of this mix can be made ahead and frozen.

Zest all the lemons and then juice them.

Mix the juice with the zest and the sugar. Cover and place in the fridge for at least 3 hours and even better if overnight. This is also the part of the recipe that can be frozen, in cubes or flattened plastic bags.

In a liquidizer, blend the lemon mix with cold water and then sieve it. Discard the lemon zest or use it in cakes.

Serving the lemonade with ice cream

Once chilled, pour it in glasses to serve, throw in a scoop of vanilla ice cream and stir. Serve.

Everyone who receives their drink should wait a couple of minutes then stir. The juice gets some creaminess from the ice cream. I prefer to stir as I go then use the spoon to finish the bit of ice cream which has not melted yet.

I used to walk the whole Medina up and down, That sort of activity needed that sweet and refreshing drink.

 

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Moroccan almond milk

Moroccan milk and almond juice

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Almond and milk juice is very much linked to my summer breaks in Fez when I was little.

The season is usually synonym of weddings, families visiting each others across the country but also a scorching heat in cities like Fez. So cold drinks and fruits are welcomed anytime especially in the middle of the day.
So this version I’m about to post is the one I’m most familiar with. The wonderful Moroccan almonds with a deep almond flavour find their match with a touch of orange blossom and a fragrant meska (mastic) to make the perfect royal drink one can serve to his guests, along with stuffed Medjool (Mejhoul) dates with almond paste or just plain nuts and traditional homemade sweets.
Some almonds such as the common Californian destined for the global market can be kind of plain in taste, If you can get hold of some good Mediterranean varieties you should be fine but otherwise you may want to boost the almond flavour with a drop of extract. Pre-roasting the almonds here is not a solution here.

 

Moroccan almond milk

Moroccan almond milk. Credit @Nada Kiffa

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Ingredients

Serves 4
Prep: 15 min – Chilling: at least 3 hours
  • 800 ml of cow’s milk, cold
  • 20 ml of water, cold
  • 100 g of blanched almonds (ideally blanched at home for more flavour)
  • 50 g of caster sugar
  • 3 drops of mastic, crushed with 1/2 tsp of caster sugar
  • 1 tsp of orange blossom water (not extract)
Preparation
Blanch the almonds in boiling water for 3 minutes. Wash with running water and drain for a couple of minutes. Peel them and re-wash them. Transfer to a kitchen towel and try to dry them thoroughly. This step can be made days ahead and the almonds frozen.
Method 1
Next, blend the blanched almonds with sugar and meska (mastic) to a paste. This step can also be made days ahead and the paste frozen. In this case, add the meska only when you mix the juice.
Mix the almond paste with water, meska and orange blossom water. Cover and set aside for a couple of hours to become soft.
Method 2
Mix the blanched almonds with water and orange blossom. leave in the fridge overnight, covered.
Next, blend the almonds with sugar and meska to a paste.
For both methods, transfer the almond mix to a liquidiser and blend with the milk as smooth as you can.
For both methods, lace a cheesecloth in a sieve and pour the juice through.

Adjust the sweetness to your liking. Chill for a few hours before serving.

A small variety of almonds in Moroccan markets. The best for the job is the one
from the montains, called locally beldi
Note
The almond grits can be used in sweet breads, tartes and sweet bakes, nothing goes to waste.
While you will still find the common Californian almonds in Moroccan markets which a cheaper price tag, some of the varieties harvested in Morocco offer a better depth of flavour (source here):
  • Aïn taoujdate
  • Drake seeding
  • Fournat
  • Marcona 
  • Net plus Ultra
  • Ferragnès
  • Truono
Some of these almonds come from the specific areas in Morocco and are known to be perfect for the traditional almond paste used for the sweet pastries, while others are meant to be used in cooking or to garnish a sweet and savoury dish (Moroccan specialty).
Marcona is ideal for roasting with salt and serving as a snack as we like them back home.
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Moroccan carrot and yogurt juice

Moroccan carrot, yogurt and orange juice

This juice is one of my aunties’ recipes although she is not the only one making it.

When summer shows its nose, juices become handy. Our mothers made sure there were homemade juices in the fridge for the whole family and particularly at midday. They also worked as dessert.

Carrot, yogurt and orange juice became fashionable in my world by the late 90s. It has an interesting texture and definitely makes you feel good. You just need to give it time to chill as it improves in texture and taste.

 

And one would think that mixing yogurt with orange will de-compose the milk in the dairy product but it won’t happen..

Ingredients
Serves 2
Prep: 5 min – Cooking: 15 min- Cooling: 3 hours

  • 300 g of carrots, peeled (or more)
  • 120 g of vanilla yogurt
  • 1 cup of freshly squeezed orange juice (or more)
  • 1/4 cup of the water where you cooked the carrots
  • 1 tbsp of sugar

 

Preparation

Peel and cut the carrots roughly. Parboil them in water for 10-15 min. I like to keep them Al-dente. Set aside to cool.

Blend all the ingredients to a smooth texture. Taste the juice to see if the sweetness is ok.

Place in the fridge for a couple of hours to chill.

Serve chilled. I like to serve it on the thick side most of the time but you could also thin it with the cold water from the cooked carrot or extra orange or clementine juice.

Thinned Moroccan carrot and yogurt juice with ice cubes

Thinned Moroccan carrot and yogurt juice with ice cubes. Credit @Nada Kiffa

The carrot, yogurt and orange juice keeps well for 48 hours.