Soufien has been our cook for the past five years in Tangiers. He cooks very well, but that is not the quality I appreciate in him the most. From the very first day I met him, I was seduced by his sympathy. It should have been the most mundane meeting, a man looking for a cook, and a cook looking for work. But when I found him waiting up front, wearing a complete motorcyclist outfit, with a monumental black fur hat, his happy, clear eyes fixed on mine, I knew I should hire him immediately, without asking too many questions. I have never looked back since.
Darting through the Tangerine traffic, Soufien always get me where I need to be on time. His little house in our gardens has become a fabled home, because Soufien has a passion for old and rare things, for stones and bones, and displays his collection with masterly harmony. He can make everything and anything: crab souffle, flower vases from burnt lightbulbs, beetles from seeds and feathers, prodigious compositions of epiphyte plants, an unforgettable raspberry crumble, and stools from old tires.
Soufien often goes to the forest which runs along the Detroit of Gibraltar, observing trees endlessly, squinting his eyes as if he wanted to hear their secret voices…the result of which you have before you.