Man selling fish, Tunisia

Further exploration required: Tunisia

My final assignment of last year was Tunisia. Though I had previously sampled Tunisian cuisine in London, it was a country that I had no real pre-conceptions about.

For me, the journey was all about the International Date Festival, an annual event now taking place in Kebili. Though I had plenty to learn about the dates, the eating side suffered – all of my meals were inside hotel restaurants and all were buffets. It seems that, in the south at least, apart from road-side street stalls, there were few to zero options for dining out.

That said, there were a few interesting things to eat. Brik for example, a deep-fried parcel of egg in pastry, was an exciting introduction of still-runny yolk to crispy pastry that broken into shards when you break open the exterior. The other thing was makroud, a sticky date and semolina sweet which is also found in Morocco.

Of course my trip was by no means comprehensive, or indeed even particularly food focused – dates aside of course. But that just leaves room for future explorations; and I haven’t even sampled (much of) the wines yet.

Here are the few food related snaps that I managed to gather:

Qin Xie

Qin Xie is a London based food, wine and travel journalist and trained chef.

When not infiltrating Michelin restaurants as a kitchen tourist, she writes about food, drink and travel. Her work has appeared on Yahoo, FT, The Times and CNN.

Her first cookbook, co-authored with YS Peng at Hunan Restaurant, is out March 2014.

According to friends, her watch is always set to UTC -- ready for the next big adventure. In reality, she is happiest at the dinner table or by the sea.


  1. First let me introduce myself, I am a member in the committee of the festival dates of kebili responsible fairs, I saw you in the show, I just wanted to thank you for the article.
    Here is my e-mail for all aid

    1. Thank you! There’s another piece coming out later this month.

    2. Hi Elkar,

      You might like my other post on dates on Yahoo here:

  2. […] Further exploration required: Tunisia […]

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