My family is the result of a nuclear fusion of sorts. It goes a bit like this: one part Moroccan + one part Italian = myself, my husband, son and co-Executive Head Chef Joe and my daughter. We as a unit personify Italo-Moroccan fusion, and as a bunch of food lovers and chefs is it really a surprise to learn that we tend to mix and match with our two celebrated gastronomies? We love it and have experimented with all sorts of tasty treats including dishes like ‘lamb tagine ragù’, but when I first met my husband I was pleasantly surprised to find out that the Italian approach to food is actually very similar to the Moroccan. For instance, our casseroles, breads and biscuits are all very similar and we both cherish fresh ingredients with a passion and equally make great use of extra virgin olive oil and fragrant olives in our recipes.
The most successful culinary by-product of our family’s Italian-Moroccan fusion has long been our bruschetta. I first enjoyed the classic Italian tomato, olive oil, garlic and basil bruschetta through my lovely mother-in-law and I’ve always thought it had an intense and delighting flavour that belied its simplicity.
My children loved bruschetta (as did my husband, of course) as much as I did, so it became a family prerogative to invent our own that drew on both the Moroccan and the Italian elements. We’ve come up with countless permutations over the years, but the ones that have stuck with us the most are merguez sausages with melted brie, sautéed calf’s liver and ox kidney with cumin and herbs, Moroccan meatball with shakshouka sauce and melted cheddar and sautéed spinach and mushroom with poached eggs. Our range of bruschetta represents our ‘go-to’ starters or gourmet snack whenever we have company or just fancy a tasty treat. My favourite is the amazing flavour of the calf’s liver and ox kidney bruschetta while Joe is a sucker for the ingredient combination of the spinach, mushroom and poached egg.
When you possess something so tasty in your culinary repertoire you can only keep it hidden for so long… So to begin autumn with a bang, Zayane will be unveiling our exquisite Italo-Moroccan fusion bruschetta to our restaurant guests. Our customers who have sampled them absolutely adored them and we know you will, too! They are very generously-sized (so bring your appetites with you) and we can make them with gluten free bread if required.
In addition to our bruschetta this autumn, we will have a few Zayane classics returning to the menu: our famous lamb shank and our harira and bissara soup.
Myself, Joe and the rest of our fusion family wish you a brilliant end of summer and can’t wait to see you at Zayane this autumn and beyond.