Volunteer: Kathryn El-Assal
Contributions from Kathryn El-Assal
I met my husband while serving in the Peace Corps. This poem is a celebration of the blending of our cultures and the wonderful diversity it brought to our lives. Spice Rack America’s melting pot implies mélange. Spice rack conjures up complexity: The tongue distinguishing textures And tastes – sweet, savory, Pleasantly piquant. We were raised differently-- You: Moroccan, Arabic-speaking, Moslem; Me: American, English-speaking, Catholic, But food...
Perhaps good food and Peace Corps seem antithetical, but in Morocco, a cultural crossroads, it was everywhere. Whether fruit, vegetables or a plucked chicken from the market, most things were fresh and seasonally available in towns such as Taza or Essaouira. And lacking such distractions as a telephone or TV, we had an incentive to imitate Julia Child's joie de la cuisine. Those of us who were teachers in Morocco had the summer months off to work on special projects. My friend Joy and I...
A culinary record of recipes tested and digested au Maroc from the summer of '82 to the close of service in '83!
During my first year of teaching English in the provincial capital of Taza, I met my husband at the marche in Fez. He was working for a French oil company and during my second year of service, he was transferred to the region of Essaouira. We conducted a long-distance romance which included visits back and forth. When I visited him in the south, I saw goats like this one climbing in the argan trees to eat the nutty, olive-size fruit.