Moumen Nouri: My Grandmother Is the Cause of my Passion for Cooking

In the new episode of Nayda in Hollywood, Simo Benbachir welcomed Chief Moumen Nouri, who came from Marrakech to San Diego to fulfill his American dream. Today, he runs the famous Kous kous restaurant, to which Americans from all over California flock to enjoy its delicious Moroccan dishes.

Moumen told Simo about his training and his debut in this trade before he arrived in the United States in 1996. He graduated from the Hotel School of Marrakech in 1988, where he studied for three years before resuming his studies at the International Higher Institute of Tourism in Tangier. His passion for cooking dates back to his early years, when he saw his grandmother preparing different Moroccan dishes. “Everything I learned from my grandmother, I present to the Americans today. »

The restaurant “Kous kous”, run by the chef Moumen, is specialized only in Moroccan cuisine. It offers a variety of tagines ranging from fish to lamb, vegetable, chicken or meat tagines to prunes.

“As soon as I arrived in the United States, I never stopped dreaming of this restaurant. I lived in Ohio before moving to California and opening this restaurant to introduce Americans to the uniqueness and richness of Moroccan cuisine. He goes on to say that “the Americans had a misconception of Moroccan cuisine, they thought it looked like Lebanese, Syrian or Turkish cuisine, but when they realized that our cuisine is different, they loved it a lot”.

Regarding the name of the restaurant, Moumen Nouri said: “Many Americans do not know Kous kous. I also found this word is simple and easy to remember. Today, after 14 years, everything is fine. We have about 390 people a week who eat pure Moroccan food.

Regarding the dishes that Americans like, Chef Moumen points out that they are “pastilla”, “Zaalouk”, Kous Kous and all kinds of tagines and salads, especially the salad of seasoned carrots.

Chief Moumen talked about his swimming every morning before starting his work day. “I love the sea. And since I was deprived of it since we don’t have a sea in Marrakech, I decided to live here by the sea and swim every day. He continued: “Sport is necessary and indispensable. I have just understood the saying of a healthy mind in a healthy body. Sport is important for the soul and body. This prepares me to face the daily challenges of the restaurant, which is not easy to manage,” he said.

Simo was also interested in the restaurant’s Moroccan decoration, and asked Moumen about it. He confirmed that it comes from Marrakech. Chief Moumen modifies it almost every three years and reinforces it with furniture and objects imported from Marrakech.

Regarding the advice he wishes to give to young Moroccans wishing to succeed in the United States, the Chief summarizes it in three points: hard work, respect for traditions while remaining open to others, and the blessing of parents.

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