Bowl of Harissa Sauce

Harissa Chili Sauce
Tunisia
  -   Harissa
Makes
Effort:
Sched:
DoAhead:  
2 cups  
**
1 hr  
Yes
Used with vegetables, meats and fish, this chili sauce is essential to the cuisine of Tunisia, almost as important in Algeria, and gaining favor in Morocco. It is used in sandwiches as far east as Israel. Commercial Harissas I've tasted have been awful. If you can't take time to make your own, you're better off using Huy Fong Chili Garlic Sauce, maybe cut a bit with tomato sauce and add some spices. This recipe makes a fairly mild sauce, but feel free to hotten it up.




-------
9
7
4
-------
1-1/3
1-1/3
1
2
1
1/3
-------
1
1
1/3
---
oz
oz
cl
---
T
T
t
t
t
t
---
T
T
c
-- Vegetables
Chilis, fresh red (1)  
Bell Pepper, red
Garlic
-- Spices
Caraway seed
Cumin seed
Black Cumin seed (2)
Paprika, smoked (3)
Salt
Pepper
-- Wet Items
Tomato purée (4)
Wine Vinegar, red
Olive Oil, ExtV
Make   -   (1 hr)
  1. Blast the CHILIS and the BELL PEPPER black with your Propane Torch. Brush off the skin under running water (a few charred bits left won't hurt any).
  2. Cap Chilis, cut in half lengthwise and core them. Seed them, but leave as much of the membranes as you can for hotness.
  3. Cap and core the Bell Pepper and cut into strips.
  4. Chop GARLIC small.
  5. Mix all Vegetables and run in a processor or blender until as smoothly puréed as you can get them (my mini-prep processor is just big enough to do this whole recipe at once). If you need to you can add a little of the wet ingredients for processing.
  6. Grind SPICES fine in your spice grinder (see Note-5).
  7. Mix in all Wet items.
  8. Check hotness. If it isn't hot enough for you grind up some dried hot red chilis in your spice grinder and mix in.
  9. Store refrigerated in a sealed jar with enough olive oil poured over it to seal it from air. It should keep for a month or so.
NOTES:
  1. Chilis:   Around here we all use red ripe Fresno chilis, or red ripe jalapenos if available (Huy Fong Foods buys nearly all of those for their famous chili sauces). Holland Red or similar chilis would also work. If you want a hotter sauce, you could replace the Bell Pepper with an equal weight of red chilis. For details see our Chilis Page.
  2. Black Cumin:   This is NOT Nigella / Kalonji (unfortunately called "Black Cumin" in Bengali), but a smaller, darker relative of regular Cumin, with a different flavor. It can be found in markets serving an Indian community. For details see our Cumin page. If you don't have it, you'll have to use a little more regular Cumin.
  3. Paprika:   Smoked paprika can be had from various Spanish food emporiums. If you can't get it, use regular Hungarian paprika (please not sawdust flavored supermarket paprika) and leave a little more of the blackened skin on the chilis.
  4. Tomato Purée:   I generally don't want to open a whole can of Tomato Purée for 1 Tablespoon. I usually have a plug of light Tomato Sauce from an 8 oz can in the freezer compartment and just slice some off.
  5. Spices:   Many African preparers dry pan roast the spices as is done in India (until nicely fragrant - don't burn - you should see no smoke and see only slight color change). Cool well before grinding.
  6. U.S. measure: t=teaspoon, T=Tablespoon, c=cup, qt=quart, oz=ounce, #=pound, cl=clove in=inch, ar=as required tt=to taste
mjv_hariss1* 141125 moro254   -   www.clovegarden.com
©Andrew Grygus - agryg@aaxnet.com - Linking to and non-commercial use of this page is permitted.