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  • Writer's pictureDounia Bennekrouf

Algerian Couscous

Dounia, a student in Algeria, explains what her culture means to her while detailing a traditional and meaningful Algerian dish called couscous.

A person lives his or her life in a compatible way with the customs and traditions of a society's culture.

Customs and traditions are an integral part of life. In my opinion, culture is difficult to abandon, as traditions are a cultural heritage inherited from our parents, grandparents, and ancestors.

Algeria, whose majority of its population resides in the north, belongs to the common Algerian culture. Therefore, we have our customs and habits, so I have devoted my article to you on the Algerian people’s traditions and practices. We will talk in particular about Algerian couscous, a traditional Algerian delicacy.

The authentic traditional dish . . . is not often absent from Algerians' tables on occasions and vacations."

Algeria’s national dish is couscous (steamed ground wheat) with lamb or chicken, cooked vegetables, and broth. Familiar flavors include onions, kale, raisins, chickpeas, paprika, salt, pepper, cumin, and cilantro. Additionally, Algerian people can serve sweet couscous with a honey, cinnamon, or almond flavor.

Algerian women use many ingredients to make couscous grains, giving them an excellent taste.

These include flour, barley, corn, acorns, and wild grass. While there are many types and different names for this dish, in the end, it ends up falling into the mold of "Algerian couscous.”

The "couscous,” the authentic traditional dish, is a complete food dish, mainly based on vegetables and dried fruits, which is not often absent from Algerians’ tables on occasions and vacations. The mastery of giving a modern twist to this dish has become appealing to women of international households, hotels, and restaurants.

Algeria, with first place for wheat-based couscous, out of 28 varieties of couscous from Tunisia, Morocco, Algeria, and Turkey, won the competition for the first international couscous festival.

Without culture, a person lives in ignorance."

Ultimately, one can decide that culture is of the utmost importance for the continuation of human civilization. Without culture, a person lives in ignorance. It transforms society from a closed society into an open community that can interact within different cultural norms.


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