- Islam is the dominate religion practiced by the majority of Moroccans.
- Prayer 5 times a day is required (dawn, noon, afternoon, sunset, evening)
- Friday is the Muslim holy day (everything closes down)
- During Ramadan all Muslims fast from dawn to dusk and may only work for six hours. At sunset families gather to celebrate the breaking of the fast (iftar)
- Family is most significant unit of Moroccan life
- Both the nuclear and extended families are important
- One gains influence in the household with age
Food and Etiquette
- Food is influenced by many different cultures including Berber, Moorish, Mediterranean, and Arab.
- The middle of the day is when the main meal takes place
- Couscous is the most well known or typical meal for the majority of the population.
Spices are used extensively in meals and many are home grown.
- Dessert usually consists of some sort of seasonal fruit.
- Kaab el ghzal is a “pastry puff stuffed with almond paste and coated with sugar” it is a common dessert in Morocco.
Greetings from Morocco
- Moroccans of the same sex that do not know each other well will shake hands
- Between people that know each other well a kiss or brushing on the cheeks is standard.
- As a sign of respect children often kiss the right hand of their elders.
- At social gatherings it is customary to shake hands with a person starting from right to left and to say goodbye to each person individually
- Typically covers everything besides the hands, feet, and face. The shoulders and legs of woman in many cases are considered private and should be covered.
- Djellaba is a long loose hooded garment with full sleeves that serves as traditional dress for men and woman. It is usually worn over clothing.
- Balgha are soft leather slippers with no heel that are worn by nearly all men and woman in Morocco. They are usually dyed yellow.
- Fez is a red cap Moroccans sometimes wear for special occasions
- Kaftans are tunics that button down the front and are only worn by woman in Morocco. They vary in quality depending on the fabric and design. They are different then a Djellaba because they do not have a hood.