27 Feb 2009

Moroccan Afternoon Tea

The lovely thing about leaving the continent for a while is that all your friends want to see you before you depart. I have spent a lovely couple of weeks grabbing drinks with girlfriends, cooking for old school friends, having supper cooked for me and sipping a fragrant glass of Moroccan Mint tea with a newly wed.

I spend a lot of time around Bond St in London- an area convenient for friends located both north and south of the river - and often visit Carluccios for coffee on their communal table. Last night, disaster struck as it was closed for refurbishment. Strolling past Levant - a place I have walked past a million times - my newly hitched friend suggested we go for tea there, so we tiptoed down the lantern lit stairs for Moroccan Mint tea.

Transported to an opulent Marrakesh-i atmosphere, my mint tea arrived and was poured from the great height needed to oxygenate the mint leaf flavou. I am not sure if that is actually why it is poured in such a way - but that is what I recall from our induction to mint tea in the High Atlas Mountains. Its appears that Mint Tea is actually the Moroccan equivalent to Cream Tea, as a towering cake stand was swiftly delivered to our table. Each level contained something different - cream cheese stuffed apricots, shell on pistachios, baklava and my favourite - a pile of Turkish delight!

The real treat about this was that I could eat all but one of the treats... and there was as much mint tea as I could drink. So, for an alternative afternoon tea - head to Morocco.

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