Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Fresh meat - an inescapable experience in Marrakech.

Peering from the window of the bus on the way to work, I see naïve chickens, feeling the cool breeze in their feathers as their heads jolt out of the cracks in the crate. They are passengers of a donkey sprinting down the road getting ready for the market.

I see nonchalant turkeys tethered to a bolt in the dirt, beady eyes scouring the air for commotion.

Fluffy bunnies huddled in cages, munching on limp lettuce, ready for the sizing up by hungry human eyes.

Fresh food takes on a different perspective in Morocco. Choose your chicken. Look for plumpness, healthiness and baraka. Watch as the skilled butcher drains the blood from the neck, de-feathers and delivers the comatose chicken to you by the feet.

Skinned carcass’ hang from the butcher's hooks in the tiny storefronts. The entrails sit in glass bowls on top of strips of astroturf in the glass counter. Brains, liver, heart, kidneys and all other kinds of unidentifiable objects. I like the idea of nothing going to waste. A use for everything.

It doesn’t bother me as much as you might think. To be honest I am more annoyed with shrink wrapped sausages and meat amalgamations in Western supermarkets. At least in Marrakech you know exactly what you are eating and its journey to your plate… or tajine or couscous.

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