Menu Changes

Moroccan Food Inspires the Next Non-Mexican Taco

David Katz
David Katz Photo: Collin Keefe

One day all nations and cultures will be represented in the form of tacos. In the past year we’ve seen Korean tacos go from street food obscurity to mainstream munching, and more recently the rise of Indian tacos. And if Meme’s David Katz has any say, Moroccan cuisine will be next in getting the taco treatment. It’s an idea he’s been kicking around for a while. On Saturday he’s opening in the afternoon to serve his new gastronomic hybrid. “If you think about it, a lot of the ingredients in Mexican and Moroccan dishes — you know, cumin, coriander, chiles, cilantro — are the same,” Katz told Grub Street. “They’re just applied differently.”

“Tacos are great! I love Mexican food, and I love Morrocan food,” Katz, whose mother was born and raised in Morocco, said. “And I just thought to myself, ‘Dude, Moroccan tacos would kick ass!’”

For Saturday’s debut he plans on serving a merguez taco, inspired by Mexican chorizo tacos, and a kefta taco with charcoal-grilled ground lamb and beef seasoned with Moroccan spices and harissa for $2 a piece. Each will be served with harissa, a housemade garlicky hot pepper salad and a green charmoula as a stand-in for salsa verde. He’s also offering specially priced Modelo Especial.

Depending on how well they are received, Katz may decide to turn it into a regular thing at Meme, and expand the offerings. Other Moroccan tacos he’s been experimenting with and serving as staff meals include a chicken tagine taco with lemon and green olives, a fish taco with charmoula marinated sardines grilled over charcoal, and a vegetarian option with a chickpeas.

“If people show up and like them, maybe we’ll work them in on another day, Katz said. Who knows, maybe I’ll get all trendy and start a Moroccan taco truck.”

Moroccan Food Inspires the Next Non-Mexican Taco