What to do with Harissa

As part of my Persian Pleasures pop up restaurant my guests were lucky enough to get a sample pot of homemade harissa to take home and cook with. So, hello to all of you lovely Persian Pleasures guests… and hello to you lovely lot who didn’t attend but are interested in some inspiring harissa recipes. Harissa is a paste made from chilies garlic oil and aromatic spices that is used in North African and Middle Eastern cooking. A little bit added to your evening meal can transform it from an ordinary mid-week dinner to something sublime and full of flavour.


Harissa from Persian Pleasures supperclub

Harissa recipe

2 teaspoon caraway seeds
2 teaspoon coriander seeds
3 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 tsp smoked paprika
chilli powder to taste
3/4 garlic cloves
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons olive oil
good squeeze tomato puree
lime juice (1/2 lime)
Toast all seeds for a few minutes until browned, crush.
Add smoked paprika and chilli powder.
Crush garlic.
mix all together (either in a pestle and mortar or in a food processor)
Add tomato paste, salt, olive oil and lime juice.

Some sample menus

Stir it into soup, smear it on a burger to give it a smoky spicy hit or jazz up roasted vegetables by mixing it in before slow cooking. It is the best new must have condiment in my house.

Whole roasted harissa cauliflower

If you have never tried roasted whole cauliflower you are missing out. This is by far my favourite way to show off your harissa whilst being super healthy and super delicious. This can also be made without the yoghurt for a vegan feast.

1 whole cauliflower
1 pot of harissa
1 pomegranate
Good dollop plain yoghurt
Handful of toasted almond flakes
Handful coriander (again you can switch this for parsley if you prefer)

Pre heat oven to 180’C
Take the leaves off the cauliflower and make sure it can sit flat in a baking tray.
Smear the cauliflower with harissa and place into a baking tray.
Cover with foil and bake for 1 hour.
Take off the foil and cook for a further 20 minutes or until tender
Whilst the cauliflower is cooking, toast your almonds in a dry frying pan.
De seed the pomegranate.
Place the cauliflower whole on a serving platter and dollop yoghurt over it, sprinkle with pomegranate and almond and finish with coriander – a total show stopper of a dish!!
Serve with flat breads and dips

Baked eggs and feta in tomato and harissa sauce

1 tin of tomatoes
1 large white onion
2 cloves garlic
Good pinch of oregano
1 pot of harissa
4 eggs
150g feta cheese
Handful of chopped mint
Handful of chopped dill
Handful chopped coriander (you can switch this for parsley if you are a hater)

Dice your onions, add them to a pre heated frying pan, add a little salt and gently fry them until translucent (about 15-20 minutes)
Add garlic cloves and fry for a couple of minutes more.
Add tin tomatoes and oregano and simmer gently with the lid on for about 30 minutes, take the lid off and let the sauce reduce for a further 10 – 20 minutes. This is important because the longer you cook the sauce the richer it becomes.
At this point pre heat your oven to 180’C
When the sauce is reduced, stir in the harissa and transfer to a baking dish.
Crumble the feta cheese onto the sauce and crack the eggs on top making sure to not break the egg yolk (although it is not the end of the world if you do) Bake in the oven for 15- 20 minutes, checking regularly.
When the egg white is set the dish is done! Sprinkle with dill, mint and coriander, squeeze a little lemon and serve with a big green salad and bread.


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