Wednesday, 2 May 2012

Harissa yoghurt


Smoked chillis, garlic salt, paprika, mint, rose petals, cumin, caraway seeds, basil oil, Rachel's Organic Greek yoghurt, bell pepper.
Preparation: 20 minutes

Harissa is a spice mix which hails from North African countries like Tunisia and Morocco and is used as a base for everything from dry meat rubs to a paste which can be spread on bread or added to sauces.
As you might expect there are thousands of recipes out there, from sharp and spicy to mellow smokey flavours, but my version - with a rose base - is universally gorgeous in my humble opinion. I like to mix it with yoghurt to make a dip (as pictured) or add to fajitas.

1) Remove the core and seeds from the bell pepper, then roast until the skin is almost completely blackened. Allow it to cool, then peel off the charred skin carefully.

2) Blitz the dried, smoked chilli in a blender, then add to a mortar and pestle and grind into a relatively fine dry paste. The ratio of spices is relatively simple for my recipe, though of course you can adjust for taste. Add 1 tsp garlic salt, 1 tsp paprika, 1 tsp cumin, 1 tsp caraway seeds and grind into the chilli. Add a teaspoon of basil oil.

3) Add the bell pepper, 2 or 3 mint leaves and the rose petals (about half the petals from a single red rose) into a blender and pulse.

4) Stir the rose, mint and pepper mixture into the spice and oil paste - now you have harissa!

5) Stir 1 teaspoon of Harissa per 200g of yoghurt.

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