Bakoula is a typical Moroccan salad usually served as a side dish next to tagines or grilled foods.
Bakoula is traditionally made with mallow (bakoula means mallow in Moroccan Arabic) but since it’s a bit challenging to find fresh mallow in London/abroad, people usually use spinach as a substitute to mallow to make bakoula at home and even in restaurants.
I like to use kale instead of mallow because its texture feels very much like mallow and also because kale is a wonderful superfood and I never miss an opportunity to add it to my dishes!
On top of being extremely healthy, bakoula is a very fresh and tasty salad. In my opinion, having bakoula is the perfect way to enjoy your greens "a la Marocaine". The combination of the greens, the spices and finally the olives/preserved lemon garnish perfectly represent Moroccan flavours in a single bite.
You can have it in a sandwich, as a side or on its own. Your choice.
Bakoula with Spinach and Kale
- 150 gr finely chopped kale leaves (stalks discarded)
- 150 gr finely chopped spinach
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 tablespoons finely chopped parsley
- 3 tablespoons finely chopped cilantro
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- ¾ tablespoons finely chopped garlic, about 3 cloves
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- ½ teaspoons cumin
- ½ teaspoons salt, or more to taste
- 1 preserved lemon, flesh removed then chopped, for garnish
- 1 handful of red olives, such as Kalamatas, pitted and sliced, for garnish
• In a large casserole or a deep skillet, heat the olive oil and add the kale and spinach over medium heat. Stir the rest of the ingredients in (except the preserved lemon and olives) and cover with a lid for 7 to 10 minutes until the kale and the spinach are cooked and soft. Stir occasionally. Uncover and cook for 5 minutes until all liquids have evaporated.
• Serve warm or cold, garnish with preserved lemon and olives.