North Africa and the Middle East are known for their communal food; that’s basically the idea behind this illustrated food GIF that reminds me of my Moroccan and multi-cultural roots!
I have a thing for North African Tagines (or Tajines)! Ever since I was a teenager, I’ve had this strong fascination with Moroccan and North African culture. Little did I know at the time that my great great grandfather was indeed Moroccan.
His daughter is a niche published author, so one day, I decided to read some of those beat-up vintage books and see what they were all about. I soon discovered her books were about him, her father, my great great grandfather; about his Moroccan way of life, his home and kitchen, his travels, and his spirituality.
Reading those books filled me up in ways I still cannot explain. They filled a hole in my heart, and sort of quenched some of that thirst and unexplainable longing I had for Morocco.
But of course, I still have Morocco as part of my multi-cultural identity. It’s the first thing I think of when I want to create a sketch or an illustration!
An Illustrated Food GIF Celebrating my Love for North African Tagines
A few days ago, I decided to create an illustrated food GIF, so I naturally gravitated towards my true love in this world, North African Tagines, with all their glorious motifs and beautiful overall silhouettes.
The patterns in this particular GIF are actually Tunisian. I’m (still) not an expert on the difference between Moroccan and Tunisian Tagines and earthware, but I know a Tunisian motif when I see one.
So what are Tagines? They are ceramic cookware used to slow-cook savoury stews and vegetable dishes in North African countries, like Tunisia, Morocco and Algeria. The lid of the Tagine traps steam, which helps cook meats and vegetables in their own stews and aromas to a delicious buttery tenderness.
This animated GIF illustration is about two women, a hostess and a guest. In North African and Middle Eastern culture, communal eating is a common aspect of the culture. In rural areas, it is super normal for a guest to ask the hostess for a taste of a dish that is making its way to the table (or the tray on the floor). Some city dwellers may think it is rude to ask for a bite before serving, but if you’re family, I guess it’s OK.
Thank you for stopping by, I hope to see you in my next post!
Animated GIF illustration of a North African Tagine food ritual by illustrator and artist Yaansoon