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Mint tea, culture and health

Something that is undeniably an essential part of Moroccan culture is Mint tea, a delicious mix of green tea, mint and sugar.

Due to the Crimean War in 1850 a British merchant realized that he could not market his gunpowder green tea in Scandinavia, so he decided to market it in Morocco. The locals soon made this tea their own by adding mint and sugar to it.

This sweet mixture became a hallmark of the country and since then it has been a symbol of hospitality and welcome towards the guests and something essential in their day to day.

The way to prepare this tea varies a lot from one place to another, but today we want to tell you how we make it.


The recipe:

1. Mint leaves are washed to get rid of some toxins and prevent them from giving a bitter taste.

2. While we boil water, we put a spoonful of gunpowder green tea in the teapot. (the amount of tea will depend on how strong you like your tea and the size of the teapot)

3. We put a little water on the tea that we have previously placed in the teapot. In this way we wash it a little and discard that water.

4. Then add the sugar (amount to taste), right after we will add the hot water and bring it to a boil again for about 3 minutes.

5. Once removed from the heat we will add the mint and just above we will put a little more sugar.

6. Finally, we let it rest in the teapot for about 5 minutes before serving it.


It is very important to serve it from above, leaving a considerable distance between the glass and the teapot so that the tea is oxygenated and all the aromas are revealed.

You’ll know you’ve done it right if a bit of foam remains at the top of the glass after serving.

In addition to being a fundamental part of the culture and having a wonderful flavor, Mint tea has numerous health benefits such as:

– Helps the immune system as it contains calcium, magnesium, copper, fluoride, and selenium. Essential minerals for its proper functioning.

– It makes breathing easier, as it contains menthol, a natural decongestant and anti-inflammatory.

– It helps you relax because it is rich in an amino acid called L-Theanine that increases your GABA levels, a neurotransmitter that helps you stay calm and deal with everyday stress.

So, Keep Calm and Sip on Moroccan Mint tea!

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Spices as gastronomic essence

Today we bring you a very special entry for our blog, how could it be otherwise on these days when we get together with family and cook dishes for all of them, we want to talk about Moroccan gastronomy and of course, about the essential protagonists: the spices.

Moroccan gastronomy is characterized by its richness in meat, legumes and vegetables, as well as its intense flavors due to the use of a wide variety of spices. And they are not only used for salted dishes, but are also present in their sweets.

A complete list of all the Moroccan spices would be very extensive, but we will at least try to talk about the ones that are most present:

Cinnamon: you might well think that cinnamon is a spice that is used for sweet dishes, but you would be surprised by the wide variety of savory dishes that are used in Moroccan cuisine, an example would be our Chicken Pastilla, the winner of Sol Over Gudhjem, the biggest food contest in Denmark.

Saffron: it is the most expensive and precious spice, mainly because its collection must be done by hand. It is used very often to perfume legumes and rice.

Ginger: it is one of the best companions of saffron, with which it is often mixed. It has the power to disguise strong aromas or flavors, to limit its role on the plate. In addition, its use as a natural medicine is very common, if one day you feel a sore throat, do not hesitate to try one of our Ginger Shots!

Turmeric: also called karkoum, it is often used as a substitute for saffron, because it is cheaper and has similar qualities, it also gives it that yellow color characteristic of our dishes.

Cumin: although the most common is its use in meats, it is also very present in legume-based dishes. One of its great advantages is that it facilitates digestion.

Za’atar: it is usually composed of hyssop, sumac, toasted or non-roasted sesame seeds and salt. It also usually carries aromatic herbs such as savory, marjoram, thyme, cumin or fennel. This spice gives a unique flavor to dishes, do not hesitate to try it in our Casablanca Sandwich!

Without a doubt, the spices of Morocco reach their quintessence when they form Ras el hanut, a mixture whose true composition varies from region to region, restaurant to restaurant and house to house. And it is kept in the strictest secrecy! It can be made up of just a few herbs and spices, or it can include up to 30 different ingredients. It does not usually lack those that we have mentioned in the list, but others can also be added such as paprika, black pepper or cardamom, also very common in our gastronomy. You can always savor this delicious mix of spices in our tajin!

We hope that this brief review about the different spices and their use will give you some ingenious ideas for your most ethnic dishes.

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Our history in Sydhavn

Today we want to use our blog to tell you our story in this neighborhood of Copenhagen.

We were born and raised here, in my family it has always been a fundamental value to help our neighbors and friends. That is why we decided to stay here and open our business in this place. Leaving sydhavn was never an option as we believe it is part of our responsibility to help it prosper.

Over the years we have been participating both professionally and voluntarily in different projects (Pallieten, Bydelsmødrene) dedicated to helping people adjust to life in Copenhagen, teaching them the language, translating necessary documents for the different bureaucracies, accompanying people to the doctor to translate what they needed, teaching women and children to ride a bicycle or even helping their children to do their school homework.

Our greatest inspiration for all this has always been our mother, she taught us to take care of others, to share and to love cooking, because as she said, food unites people, regardless of origin, religion or thought.

She taught us to empower ourselves and to see ourselves capable of doing anything, always with effort and perseverance.

For this reason, now, we want to share with our environment everything we have learned trying to empower the women of our community and serving as support so that in this way they can overcome any difficulty.

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WELCOME TO OUR BLOG

A few years ago my sister and I decided to undertake this project, a project in which we intended to bring to Denmark, a piece of our Moroccan culture through flavors, smells and music.

Little by little this idea took shape and became South Harbor Café, a little piece of Morocco in Copenhagen.

Over the years we have created a family that has made us grow as a business and above all as people. In recent months, recognition has materialized in awards and reviews that have made it possible for our typical dishes to be marketed in supermarkets, thus making it possible for our project to reach more people, projecting our dream where we would never think it would reach.

Thanks to you, who have always supported us and accompanied us on our way, we have achieved all this, and that is why we would like to start a new stage, creating this blog where we can share a little bit of our culture, our progress, promotions, recipes, music, fun facts and everything else to come.

I hope that in this way we can continue to connect and get to know each other a little better, supporting multiculturalism and exchanging flavors and smiles.

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