MarocMama

eat well, travel often, dream big!

Today is National Crepe Day – did you know there even was such a thing?? Crepes are a favorite in our house. Both of my boys love them for breakfast or snacks. Thanks to the French influence in Morocco it’s very common to find stands selling crepes in nearly every city. If I have time on the weekend I will make a very big batch of crepes, let them cool, and store them in the fridge for breakfast during the week. I slightly under cook them so that they will stay soft when I warm them up.

Whether you like yours sweet or savory there’s something for everyone in these ten recipes to satisfy your crepe-y desires!

10 Easy Crepe Recipes for National Crepe Day

10 Great Crepe Recipes

What is your favorite way to make or eat crepes?

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    I've got to be honest I had never tasted farro before finding out about a cooking challenge from Tuscan Fields and Eat Write Retreat.  I knew it was a grain and it reminded me of barley but that's about it.  A quick google search told me that it's really common in salads. So when two…
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  • 57
      I am a sucker for snack foods. It's a huge downfall when I'm trying to watch what I eat so I really try to find great options that still are healthy. A few weeks ago I was introduced to Vibrant Flavors dukkah and pretzels and let's just say I was smitten from the beginning.…
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  • 48
    If there is one thing my boys really enjoy it's getting into my kitchen and "helping" mom.  They do help but it is definitely a test of my patience.  I try to let them help me at least once a week, generally on the weekends.  Usually it's a group effort but I am starting to…
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Mint Chocolate Chip Muffins

Mint Chocolate Chip Muffins

Mint chocolate chip ice cream. Thin Mints. Grasshoppers. If it has mint and chocolate I’m in.

When I started making these muffins (and the strawberry hazelnut muffins from a little while ago), I got to thinking, what makes a muffin different from a cupcake? Should these have really been cupcakes? Are  they just cupcakes disguised as muffins?  I did an informal poll of my mom and sister and then consulted the Google oracle to see what answers I could come up with.

So what makes a muffin a muffin and a cupcake a cupcake? Eugenie’s Kitchen has a great post comparing the two. So I consulted the charts she drew up and decided that I’m still calling these muffins. If you decide to put frosting on them and call them cupcakes, I won’t tell anyone.

Let’s just pretend they’re healthy together, ok?

Mint Chocolate Chip Muffins

Ingredients

  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • ¼ cup oil
  • ¼ cup Greek yogurt
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ¾ cup milk
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp mint extract
  • palmful of fresh, finely chopped mint
  • 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips (use any type of chocolate you like)

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350F.
  • In a large bowl mix together flour, baking soda, and sugar.
  • Whisk, oil, Greek yogurt, milk, egg, and mint extract and combine with dry ingredients.
  • Chop fresh mint leaves as fine as possible and fold into batter.
  • Lastly, add chocolate chips and mix batter one final time.
  • Grease muffin tins or line with parchment paper and fill each ½ way with batter.
  • Bake for 25 minutes – 30 minutes until a knife comes out clean.
3.1
http://marocmama.com/2014/03/mint-chocolate-chip-muffins.html
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Strawberry Hazelnut Muffins

Strawberry Hazelnut Muffins Horizontal

As a child, each Valentine’s Day my mom would make my sister and I something special for breakfast, like heart shaped pancakes or pink milik and had always put together a big Valentine gift. It wasn’t something fancy, not even a toy but usually some of our favorite candy and a card letting us know how much she and I my dad loved us. It was always my favorite Valentine. School parties were fun and writing out Valentine’s to friends was always a process I had to start weeks before; selecting just the right cards, picking the best candy to attach, perfect. I have to say as a mom I fail miserably in this category. I’m just not very good with details. I can make my kids delicious things to eat but the rest of it, not so much.

My kids love muffins and so I have been playing with different techniques, ingredients, and sizes. So far, I haven’t made a batch that they disliked – these are no different.

Time Flies in Love

Our family in 2005 (top) and 2014 (bottom)

Strawberry Hazelnut Muffins

Ingredients

  • • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • • 2 tsp baking soda
  • • ¼ cup oil
  • • ¼ cup Greek yogurt
  • • ½ cup sugar
  • • ¾ cup milk
  • • 1 egg
  • • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • • 1/2 cup chopped hazelnuts
  • 1 cup strawberries, tops removed
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1/4 cup water

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350F.
  • In a large bowl mix together flour, baking soda, and sugar.
  • Whisk, oil, greek yogurt, milk, egg, and vanilla extract and combine with dry ingredients.
  • In a pan add strawberries,1 Tbsp sugar, and 1/4 cup water.
  • Heat on low until the strawberries begin so soften and fall apart. You can leave them in pieces if you like chunks, or blend to a liquid.
  • Blend strawberries into batter.
  • Grease muffin tins or line with parchment paper and fill each ½ way with batter.
  • Roughly chop hazelnuts and sprinkle the nuts onto the tops of the muffin batter.
  • Bake for 25min – 30 minutes until a knife comes out clean.
3.1
http://marocmama.com/2014/02/strawberry-hazelnut-muffins.html

Strawberry Hazelnut Muffins

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95 Egg-cellent Dishes!

95 Eggcellent Dishes

My kids have grown a new love for eggs. This is great because here, we can buy fresh egg every day for pennies – literally. Last week my youngest decided he didn’t want what we were having for dinner, so off he went to the hanut, a very small “corner store” found everywhere here. He came back minutes later with 2 eggs and a small loaf of bread. For 2 dirham (about 20 cents). I quickly made them for him and he was content. I’ve appreciated eggs even more since moving to Morocco. They’re cheap and filling and can be prepared so many ways.

In honor of my new found appreciation for the humble egg, here are 95 ways to prepare them!

The Egg Stands Alone

Eggs on Toast Fancified
Bite-Size Bacon, Mushroom, and Gruyere Quiche
Home Pickled Eggs
Deviled Eggs with Capers and Parsley
Baked Eggs in a Basket
Hilary’s Heavenly Eggs
Eggs in Chili Clouds
Siracha Deviled Eggs with Microwave Potato Chips
Bruschetta Baked Eggs
Avocado Bacon Deviled Eggs
Mushroom, Leek, and Goat Cheese Mini Quiche in Phyllo Cups
Spicy Deviled Eggs
Individual Veggie Quiche Cups
Chinese Marbled Tea Eggs
Baked Eggvocado
Southwest Deviled Eggs
Red Russian Kale, Tomato, and Eggs Baked in Ham Cups

 

Breakfast Eggs

Potato Latke Eggs Benedict
Hawaiian Scrambled Eggs
Bacon and Spinach Breakfast Pizza
Harissa Breakfast Scramble
Cilantro Crème Fraiche with Scrambled Eggs
Scrambled Qunioa Omelette with Veggies
Chard and Saffron Omelette by Ottolenghi
Bacon, Egg, and Toast Cups
Scrambled Egg Breakfast Crepes
Roasted Asparagus with Poached Eggs
Farmer’s Market Puffed Omelette
Crispy Hashbrowns, Eggs and a side of Bacon
Hashbrown Waffle with a Fried Egg
Queso Blanco Egg Sandwich
Omelet Breakfast Burritos
Pesto Spinach Omelette
7 Minute Breakfast Burrito
Baked Ranchero Eggs with Blistered Pepper Jack Cheese
Mexican Breakfast Casserole
Waffle Eggs Benedict
Tex Mex Scrambled Eggs
Egg, Cheese, and Mixed Greens Breakfast Muffins
Eggs Jeanette

Lunch or Dinner Eggs

Shakshuka with Summer Squash and Goat Cheese
B.L.A.T. Omelette Wrap
Easy Curried Eggs
Shakshuka with Feta and Cilantro
Shakshuka
Moroccan Kefta and Eggs Tagine {Guest Post}
Vanilla Bean Floating Island
Korean Ham and Eggs with Chile Maple Sauce
Eggs Toscana
Asparagus and Eggs
Quail Egg, Potato, and Merguez Tortilla
Healthy Huevos Rancheros
Poached Eggs with Polenta, Braised Kale, and Pancetta
Salad Lyonaisse
Tuna Lemon-Aioli Bruschetta
Ervilhas Guisadas (Portugese Braised Peas with Eggs and Chourico)
Eggs over Polenta
Shrimp and Veggie Egg Drop Soup
Curry Fried Rice with Hard Boiled Eggs
Shakshuka (Eggs Poached in Tomato Sauce)
Salsa Egg Tacos
Rustic Egg Salad

Frittata, Quiche, and Strata

Easy Vegetable Frittata
Turkey Club Quiche
Spinach Tomato and Feta Frittata
Cheesy Baked Egg Tart with Tarragon, Tomato and Zucchini
Roasted Vegetable Crustless Quiche with Basil and Pine Nuts
Mini Frittatas with Potatoes and Greens
Roasted Red Pepper and Egg Tarts
Apple Cheddar Frittata
Huevos Rancheros with Smoky Spicy Guacamole and Grain Free Tortillas
Potato, Ham, and Cheese Crescent Mini Quiches
Zucchini and Green Chile Quiche
Ham and Cheese Breakfast Bars
French Fry Frittata with Chipotle Chorizo Sauce
Mini Quiches with Carmelized Pears and Gorgonzola
Crustless Vegetable Quiche
Elegant Individual Quiche
Sweet Onion, Asparagus, and Goat Cheese Quiche
Farm Fresh Vegetable Quiche
Individual Spinach Frittatas
Mexican Sausage and Cornbread Strata
Ham, Spinach, and Mushroom Quiche

Casseroles and Baked Dishes

Southwestern Breakfast Bake
Mexican Omelette Pie
Make Ahead Breakfast Enchiladas
Bacon and Eggs Breakfast Bake
Paleo Breakfast Casserole with Broccoli Rabe, Chicken Sausage, and Shallots
Healthy Omelette Crepe Style
Baked Eggs in Spicy Sauce
Duffy’s Delight
Bacon & Escarole Custard
Baked Eggs in Bread Bowls
Moroccan Skhina or Dafina
Kefta Mkawra (Egg and Ground Meat Tagine)

Whew! That’s a lot of eggs!!  Have a favorite way to prepare them or a link to a great recipe? Leave it in the comments.

P.S. MarocBaba and I are in Finland this week. We’re heading to Porvoo tonight – check out Finland’s second oldest town! Don’t forget to follow me on Instagram for pictures during our trip too!

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Quail Egg, Potato and Merguez Tortilla

I could watch cooking shows all day long – in any language. I am always intrigued by what a chef chooses to create with ingredients, especially unique ingredients. On an episode of Chopped one of the ingredients was quail eggs. I remember thinking how adorable the little eggs looked, but slightly queasy thinking of the little birds that could hatch out of them. (I know, no birds come out of unfertilized eggs!) I’ve had a lot of fun shopping in the markets and grocery stores here. On a recent trip to supermarket mega store Marjane I found quail eggs in the refrigerated section. Then I looked at the price and immediately put them in my cart.

Quail Eggs

For 18 eggs I spent not even $2! I think in the US quail eggs are probably about that much PER egg. For a few days they sat at home while I considered what I could make that would showcase these eggs.  Simple scrambled eggs just wouldn’t do. I wanted to keep the eggs whole so that their tiny size could be appreciated.  Last weekend as I made breakfast for the kids, I glanced at my little quail eggs and remembered the merguez sausages I needed to use up. I also happened to have some leftover potatoes from dinner the night before. Perfect!

Quail Egg and Merguez Tortilla

I often make a tortilla espanola for dinner along with a big salad but it makes an equally hearty, and easy breakfast dish. If you have leftovers to use up, better yet. What surprised me the most as I put this together was how the little eggs are a bit difficult to break. I used the back of a knife to cut off the top of each egg. If you didn’t care whether the yolks broke or not you could crack them as you would a chicken egg but trust me, the yolks will break too. MarocBaba shared this breakfast with his mom and I got a thumbs up.  You can make this tortilla with chicken eggs too – but quail eggs are a unique surprise.

Broken Quail Eggs

Quail Egg, Potato and Merguez Tortilla

Ingredients

  • 10 quail eggs
  • 1 lb pre-cooked, sliced potatoes
  • 1/4 lb merguez sausage
  • 1/2 onion
  • 1 tsp vegetable oil
  • 2 tsp butter
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 tsp cumin

Instructions

  • Begin by preparing all of the items to assemble this dish. Remove merguez from casing and crumble. Slice or dice onions thinly. Slice pre-cooked potatoes as thin as possible. Carefully break all of the quail eggs into a bowl.
  • Heat a large skillet on the stove-top. Melt 1 tsp butter and vegetable oil into the pan.
  • Add onions and merguez to the skillet and cook until onions are translucent and merguez cooked through.
  • Remove onions and meat from the skillet onto a plate and set to the side.
  • Return the skillet to the heat, add 1 tsp of butter and spread the sliced potatoes in a single layer. Top with cooked onions and merguez.
  • Finally carefully add the quail eggs,spreading to cover the top of the potatoes.
  • Sprinkle salt and cumin on top.
  • As the eggs start to cook, cover the skillet with a lid to cook the top of the eggs.
  • When everything is set and cooked through, remove from the heat and serve.
3.1
http://marocmama.com/2013/10/quail-egg-potato-and-merguez-tortilla.html

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Gluten Free Blueberry Galettes

“When I was 17 my mom and dad took the train west to visit family.  They left me home with my baby brother who was maybe 2 years old. At that time I didn’t think anything of it, I had helped my mom from the time he was born. We lived on a farm and every morning I’d get up before my brother to take care of the chores around the house.  Then some days I would put him in the backseat of our car. There were no baby seats, and I was driving, so I just put him in the back and told him to stay put.

There was a big blueberry patch a few miles down the road and so every day when the chores were done we would make our way there.  I spread out a quilt for him and I picked blueberries until all the buckets were full. He sat on the blanket, playing with sticks, or whatever he found around him. I’m sure there were ants crawling on the blanket and who knows what else but back then no one fussed about that stuff. 

When we’d get home at night I would make the blueberries into preserves and can them. It had to be done right away or the berries would have gone bad. By time my parents got home I was able to have picked and saved 50 pounds of blueberries. If I would have waited until my mom came home they would have all been gone. You know I didn’t even think about doing this, it was just a part of life, the way things were. Every summer my husband, kids, and I would go pick berries – all kinds – to put up.  My husband still makes a couple hundred gallons of blueberry wine. We’re lucky to get a few bottles after we give it to family and friends. It’s a good thing they’ve made blueberry bushes now, I don’t know if my back could take bending over to pick off those little bushes on the ground.” 

 

Before we moved we had a garage sale to get rid of all of our extra “stuff”. In a way that I’ve come to discover is quintessentially Midwestern my mom struck up a conversation with an older couple.  The man was a World War II vet and wore his Navy pride on his VFW hat. Somehow the conversation turned to a discussion about the best place to pick blueberries, and the giant bucket my mom and step-dad picked a few days earlier. Then she told us the story that she always remembers when she thinks about blueberries. As she walked away I smiled and told my mom, those stories just capture a moment of someone’s life, a piece of the past. It’s too bad they aren’t shared often enough and just disappear.

Blueberry Almond Galette

As I was making these, I kept thinking back to the lady and her little brother. I wondered how time had changed them, if he admired his big sister and I would have the guts to leave my 17 year old in charge of a toddler for a few weeks (I wouldn’t!). I thought about the treats they made through the cold Wisconsin winter with the blueberries, bringing back a small taste of summer. I couldn’t save the blueberries and there’s none to be found here but if you happen upon some fresh berries, or even some frozen berries that have been thawed you’ll love this easy breakfast/dessert.

Gluten Free Blueberry Galettes

Ingredients

    Crust
  • 2 cups coconut flour
  • 1 cup almond flour
  • 11/2 Tbsp sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp xantham gum
  • 1 stick or 4oz of cold butter cut into cubes
  • 2 tbsp vegetable shortening
  • 1/4 c ice water
  • Filling
  • 2 cups blueberries
  • 2 Tbsp chilled butter
  • 2 Tbsp sugar
  • 2 tsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup almond flour
  • sliced almonds for decoration

Instructions

    To Make the Crust
  • Add the coconut flour, almond flour, xantham gum, sugar, and salt to a food processor. Begin to pulse and add the butter and vegetable shortening. Continue to pulse until there are no large pieces left and the dough looks like bread crumbs. Slowly add water just until the dough comes together. Warp the dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least two hours but up to 24 hours. (If you do not have a food processor the ingredients can be mixed by hand)
  • To Make the Filling
  • Add washed and rinsed blueberries to a large bowl. Use your fingers to break apart the butter in to small pieces and combine with the berries. Mix in sugar, lemon juice, and almond flour.
  • To assemble Galettes
  • Preheat oven to 400F
  • Remove dough from the fridge and divide into four to five equal parts. Allow the dough to warm up a little. Lightly dust a cutting board with coconut flour or almond flour and press out the dough with your hands. You will want to create a round disc shape.
  • In the middle of the disc add a few teaspoons of the blueberry mixture. Fold up the edges of the galette. It WILL NOT cover the full top of the pastry, just a rough lip.. If the dough buckles or even crumbles a little bit it’s ok. This is a rustic pastry.
  • Slide each galette onto a baking sheet that it will not stick.. I like to use a silpat liner. A sheet lined with parchment paper will also work. Decorate the tops of the pastry with slivered almonds.
  • Once all galettes are ready to bake, place in the oven for 20 minutes and then check. The crust should be a toasted brown color and the fruit soft when you poke with a fork or knife. If they are not done at this point, continue checking every 5 minutes. Be careful not to overcook.
  • These are often served at room temperature but I think they taste best when warm.
3.1
http://marocmama.com/2013/09/gluten-free-blueberry-galettes.html

 

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{Guest Post} Rose Petal Jam from Olga of Jardin Majorelle

I’ve been wanting to write a post about roses and their connection to Morocco for a long time. It’s filed in my “things to write about” file (well I did write this piece about Morocco’s rose festival). It might be blaise, but I do love roses.  I was reminded of that a few weeks ago when my sister gave me a big bouquet of pink roses for Eid.  I’ve loved having them sitting on my table – every time I look at them I feel a big smile creeping across my face.  Today’s guest post is from Olga owner of Jardin Majorele Flower Design. What I would give for her to come to my house/party/event and do flower arrangements! You can find Olga and her beautiful work on her blog, Facebook, and Twitter. Make sure you also check out a beautiful post she wrote about creating a bouquet using mint – what a great idea!

I was always fascinated by the flower world, its beauty and mystery, secrets the flowers keep away from the humanity. We keep digging to learn and discover more every day. We use flowers in perfumery, flower arranging, healing our body and soul, in cooking. One of these flowers is a Rose – a Queen of all flowers.

Rose is very respectful among the flowers. It has three main medical properties: It is soothing, cooling, and moisturizing. The rose also offers a soothing property to the nerves and emotional/psychological state of mind, nervous tension and heart disease. Rose hips are great source of vitamins C, D, A and E. They also contain citric acid, malic acid, zinc and bioflavonoids.

Rose Petals JM

Most important is that we all can enjoy rose in cooking and there are many food products made with roses. The artisans from France started making a rose liqueur and rose-flavored sweets, biscuits, jam and honey. In Paris, you will find culinary rose essence. In Tunisia, Morocco and India, people make delicious rose syrup. You can come across rose jams and jellies in Poland and Romania.

Most roses are edible. The flavor of roses is distinct and it looks as wonderful as it tastes. Some roses are tastier than the others are. Fragrant red and pink old-fashioned such as – Damask, Old English, Baron Girod, Rugosa – are often used for the jam, as they keep their aroma and flavor during the cooking.

Rose Petal Jam

Rose petal jam is our cooking dish today

Ingredients

  • ½ pound red or dark pink rose petals. The color of the petals will be the color of the jam.
  • 2 cups of sugar
  • Juice of 2 lemons
  • 4 ½ cups of water

 

Preparation

  1. First thing first, we have to wash our roses properly to remove bugs, and then cut off the white bottom of each petal. Discard any petals that might appear brown.

Rose Petals

  1. Place the rose petals into a bowl and sprinkle the sugar over them to make sure that each petal is coated.  After bruise them with your fingers and cover the bowl with plastic film. Leave the bowl overnight in a cool spot – refrigerator will work.
  2. Prepare a saucepan and pour in the remaining sugar, water and lemon juice. Dissolve contents over a low heat. You may also include the seeds of the lemon, which is supposed to contribute pectin and help thicken the jam, this is optional, as some recipes do not specify their need. Your choice.
  3. Stir the rose petals into the mixture and allow to simmer 20 min. Bring to a boil and continue to boil for 5 more min until the mixture thickens. Stir the jam until a spoonful dropped onto a cold plate jells and holds its shape. However, if you have a jelly thermometer, cook and stir until the temperature reaches 221 F.

                                                                Rose Flower Liquid

Pour your jam into a clean, warmed jar and add the cover and a label. If you are not planning to eat your rose jam shortly, use proper canning procedures to make sure the jam keeps in the jar. Store it in a cool place and indulge.

Bon appetite!

JM 5

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Harissa Breakfast Scramble

It seems way to early to start thinking about back to school – seriously where did the summer go?? My last few shopping trips to pick up items for packing I couldn’t help but notice more and more parents and kids walking the aisles with their supply lists. i have to admit it made me a little teary. I know we’ll have school supplies in Morocco but my favorite part of the new year is checking things off of that supply list! The thing I dislike the most about the school year is making breakfast. I just don’t like it! I’m always on the look out for fast, healthy meals that I know my kids (and husband) will eat. I think this is a real winner.

Harissa Breakfast Scramble

 Eggs are such a good way to get a lot of protein. I know so many people who like to add salsa or hot sauce to their eggs.  I thought why not harissa? Not only is this excellent for a quick weekday breakfast, it’s also good for brunch.  You could add in chopped vegetables, shredded potatoes, anything really to bulk it up.

Harissa Eggs

If you’re not one for scrambled eggs, make a frittata or omlette.  Instead of scrambling the eggs while cooking just leave them sit alone and set up.  You can adjust the amount of harissa too – maybe just a little bit for kids while adults might like more of a kick. One more great suggestion – if you only eat egg whites adding a bit of the harissa sauce will add flavor without fat.  I think egg whites have no taste so this is a great idea!

Harissa Breakfast Scramble

Ingredients

  • 3 eggs (free range or organic if possible)
  • 1 package Saffron Road Harissa Simmer Sauce (you won’t use the whole package)
  • 1 Tbsp butter
  • any other breakfast sides or fillings you enjoy such as meat, potatoes, or vegetables

Cracked Eggs for Breakfast

Directions

  • In a skillet pan melt 1 Tbsp of butter.
  • Crack eggs into a bowl and whisk with a fork to scramble.
  • Add 1-2 Tbsp harissa simmer sauce to the eggs and whisk.  You can add more harissa until you achieve desired “heat” level.
  • Once the butter has melted, add the eggs to the skillet and use a silicone spatula to continually stir the eggs until cooked through.
  • The eggs will have a reddish/brown tint this is from the harissa.  The eggs will only take 3-4 minutes to cook through on medium high heat.
  • Serve with extra harissa on the side and any sides of your choice.

What are some of your favorite go-to breakfast ideas for school mornings?

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    This gluten-free thing is really resting my cooking skills and creativity. It's REALLY stretching my limited baking skills.  I still haven't been able to make a good bread, though a few have been decent, but not good.  Instead of trying to replicate bread that MarocBaba is so dearly missing I'm trying instead to come up…
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