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Harissa

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What is it?

Just about every area of the world has a favorite type of chile sauce. In North Africa, it’s harissa, a chile paste scented with cumin, coriander, and garlic, which is used to flavor couscous and kebabs, as well as various salads. Harissa can be quite fiery, though this homemade harissa recipe, made with ancho chiles, is relatively mild.

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    Recipes

  • moroccan lamb with seven vegetables
    Recipe

    Moroccan Lamb and Seven-Vegetable Couscous

    This traditional dish is served as the centerpiece of every festive and celebratory meal in North African communities around the world, from weddings to funerals, for the feast of the…

  • Pappardelle with Harissa
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    Pappardelle with Rose Harissa, Black Olives, and Capers

    Pappare means “to gobble up,” in Italian, which is the destiny of this dish (particularly in Tara’s house, where her husband, Chris, makes it most Sunday nights). I like it…

  • Recipe

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    Harissa, a North African hot sauce, adds a bit of complex heat to a simple “fry sauce” (a mixture of ketchup and mayonnaise) and perfectly offsets the sweetness of the…

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    Harissa-Yogurt Baked Chicken Thighs

    Harissa pastes vary in heat level. Taste some of the harissa-yogurt sauce before putting it on the chicken, and adjust the amount of harissa paste to your liking.

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    Spicy Cauliflower and Carrots

    It's amazing how much flavor a dab of spicy harissa paste will do for these simple roasted winter vegetables.

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    Harissa-Almond Hummus

    This fluffy dip has a creamy, nutty flavor unlike anything you’ll find in a grocery store. Serve with pita, cucumbers, peppers, or carrots.

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    Tomato-Harissa Poached Eggs

    This is a quick version of a Middle Eastern dish called shakshuka. Harissa, a spicy North African pepper paste, adds a complex, mellow heat in place of the more traditional…

  • Recipe

    Moroccan Chicken Burgers with Feta and Carrot Slaw

    These burgers come packed with aromatic flavor thanks to cumin, fresh ginger, mint, and harissa, a spicy North African condiment. If you can’t find harissa, try a mild Thai curry…

  • Recipe

    Butter-Basted Spiced Cod with Polenta

    Baking cod in melted butter adds a richness to the fish that nicely balances the heat from the harissa, a North African paste made of ground dried chile peppers, garlic,…

  • Moveable Feast

    Dungeness Crab with Harissa Aïoli and Grilled Vegetables

    Dungeness crab is revered for its sweet flavor and tender flesh (and is a sustainable choice). In this Moroccan-inspired recipe it's boiled briefly, then paired with a spicy harissa-spiked aïoli…

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