The boys are really excited about trying different foods and learning about other countries. I chose Morocco to start because we regularly eat tagine type food and I know the boys love it. Isn't that missing the point I hear some of you say? Maybe, but for our first go and to keep them keen I couldn't risk giving them food they might not like and then expect them to have an interest in learning about the country it comes from. So Morocco it was... Remember this is aimed at two fairly small children, so don't expect anything high brow. Also it's me writing, so definitely don't expect anything high brow!! I decided against finding out about children as you type that into google and some pretty unpleasant things come up... We'll just stick with learning about the food and the countries and if anybody has any interesting information or ideas then we'd love to hear them.
Before we'd even finished breakfast the boys had learned that Morocco's official language is Arabic. It's part of Africa but is the only African country not to be part of the African Union. It's just opposite Spain. We also learned some Arabic words (from a great website that had sound). We can now say, hello, goodbye, my name is..., please, thank you, yes and no in Arabic. Actually the website wasn't that great as it had loads of pop up adverts so I wont recommend it.
We made lamb tagine with apricots from an old recipe that my mother-in-law gave me (I'll post it soon). We served this with cous cous and a nice fresh undressed salad. The boys wanted theirs layered, a layer of cous cous, a layer of tagine and a layer of salad.
We also made almond pastries in honey syrup (Birwat Bi Loz) from Claudia Roden's book Arabesque. I've had this book since it came out but the only things I've ever made from it have been the almond pastries. Having read through it a lot yesterday I'm going to try a few more things this week.
As most people with families will agree - it's one big juggling act. So with balls in the air we've been to Morocco and back again as Little has gone off to a birthday party. We'll visit again, either later today but most cerainly during the week. For a start we have a fridge full of ingredients conducive to Moroccan cuisine, including rose harissa which I was addicted to while I was pregnant, both times. Today was really good fun. It's raised all sorts of questions even from Small who when looking at the map of the world asked where England was, for a child under 3 I thought that was quite good... He was missing the point as we were talking about Morocco but at least he was showing an interest... I'm encouraged.