Tunisian harissa recipe
Skill level Easy
100 g dried long red chillies, seeded
½ tsp caraway seeds
½ tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp coriander seeds
100 ml extra virgin olive oil
5 garlic cloves, crushed
2 tbsp lemon juice
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
Makes 250 ml
Soaking time 1 hour and 30 minutes
You will need a spice grinder, a food processor, a food mill and a sterilised jar (see Note)
Place chillies in a bowl and pour over enough boiling water to cover. Place a small plate directly on top of chillies to keep them submerged then stand for 1½ hours or until very soft. Drain well.
Meanwhile, heat a small frying pan over medium–low heat, add spices and fry, stirring frequently, for 2 minutes or until fragrant. Finely grind spices in an electric spice grinder or a mortar and pestle. Combine drained chillies, spices, 1 tsp salt, ½ tsp pepper and remaining ingredients in a small food processor. Process to a smooth paste, occasionally scraping down sides. Push mixture through a food mill, extracting as much purée as possible; the solids should be dry. Transfer mixture to a sterilised jar and seal. Harissa will keep for up to 1 year stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
• Sterilising jars - it is essential to sterilise jars before filling them to prevent bacteria from forming. You can reuse any glass jars as long as the lids seal well. Or buy kilners (jars with rubber seals). To sterilise jars in the oven, preheat oven to 120°C. Wash jars and lids in soapy water, rinse, then dry. Place jars and non-plastic lids on an oven tray and place in oven for 20 minutes. Remove and fill while still hot. To sterilise jars in the dishwasher, place them in the dishwasher on the hottest cycle. Dry with a clean tea towel and fill while still hot.
Photography Chris Chen
As seen in Feast magazine, October 2013, Issue 25. For more recipes and articles, pick up a copy of this month's Feast magazine
Recipe related to Tunisian harissa:
Harissa | Harissa chicken wings with preserved lemon marmalade | Harissa lamb with chickpeas and parsley | Harissa lamb & pepper kebabs recipe | Chicken, harissa and aubergine tagine | Falafel with Tabouli, Harissa and Sauce Recipe