The next country on my travel list: MOROCCO!
I have wanted to go there for so long. I remember watching an Anthony Bourdain episode where he traveled and ate his way through Morocco, it made me fall in love with Morocco more than ever before. The food and culture looked amazingly unique and delicious!
One of my favorite condiments: HARISSA!
I don't quite remember how I first discovered harissa but I have been throwing it in my cooking impulsively for the last few years. It is a north African hit chili paste commonly used in cooking in Morocco, Libya, Tunisia and Algeria. You can use it on everything from scrambled eggs to fish. It is a delicious and spicy addition to any meal.
I literally thought of this recipe on a whim. I had gotten all this leftover naan bread from this awesome Indian restaurant that Josh and I frequently visit right by our house. (The chai tea is amazing as well.)
I was looking in the fridge and I said, "I have all this leftover naan bread but literally nothing to dip it in!" If you don't know me you know that is a travesty to me. The only reason to eat carbs in my mind is for some sauce, spread or condiment to dip it in. Otherwise, why bother!!
Anyway, I had just purchased a brand new harissa from our local market and then a light bulb went off. I am going to make a harissa hummus!
I went with the traditional chickpea-based hummus but I wanted to add a few more ingredients that really added a North African touch. So in addition to the chickpeas I decided to add in some roasted red bell peppers. I think I was kind of going for that hummus + muhummara (Middle Eastern dip) feel.
The hummus turned out great but it was missing some elements. It seemed so
one-dimensional, plus, anytime I can get away with it I try and make complimentary yet opposite flavor profiles. They kind of balance each other out. I ended up doing a play on zhoug, which is a middle eastern spicy cilantro sauce. Except, I omitted the jalapeno and the pepper flakes because the hummus was spicy enough. I don't want to kill your taste buds!!!
The cilantro sauce also added colorful contrast additions, instead of this plain orange glop in a bowl. (I feel like I am not helping myself sell this to you very well.)
Oh well, sales was never my forte..hopefully my pictures do all the selling!
I wanted to add a slight crunch element too, so I made up my mind to toss chickpeas in some cumin essential oil, olive oil, garlic powder, salt and pepper and make roasted chickpeas. A delicious addition and great healthy snack for later!
There you have it! A spicy, flavorful and robust hummus recipe for all your snacking pleasure.
This is great for dipping with some garlic naan or using it as a side sauce to a falafel sandwich, a roasted middle eastern bowl or even as a side sauce to eggs and potatoes. So versatile! Keep a watch out for my next recipe which will feature this harissa hummus!
And don't forget to add the cilantro sauce and roasted chickpeas, it adds a great flavor dimension. Save the extra chickpeas for pleasureful side snacking! Yum!
spicy harissa hummus with cilantro sauce and cumin roasted chickpeas
serves about 6
spicy red pepper harissa hummus
2 red bell peppers, roasted
1 (15 ounce) can of chickpeas or 1 1/2 cup cooked chickpeas
1/4 cup tahini
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 tablespoons mild harissa sauce (see RECIPE NOTES)
1 teaspoon cayenne powder
1 medium garlic clove, roughly chopped
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
salt to taste
2 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
1 packed cup fresh cilantro (about 1 bunch)
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 drop cumin essential oil*
1 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
cumin roasted chickpeas
2 (15-ounce) cans chickpeas, thoroughly rinsed and drained
3 tablespoons avocado oil (see RECIPE NOTES)
2 drops cumin essential oil*
1 teaspoon garlic powder
salt and pepper, to taste
Place a rack in upper part of the oven and turn the broiler on high. Broil peppers on baking sheet, turning on occasion, until flesh is soft and skins are charred, about 12 to 15 minutes. Transfer bell peppers to a medium bowl and cover tightly with plastic wrap for about 10 minutes so that they can steam.
Remove skins from bell peppers (doesn't have to be perfect), remove and discard ribs and seeds. Combine red bell peppers, chickpeas, lemon juice, tahini, garlic, harissa, cayenne and salt in a food processor. Process until smooth, about 1 minute.
With the motor running, add the olive oil and continue to process until hummus is creamy, about another minute. Taste and season with salt. Transfer hummus to a bowl, drizzle with more olive oil, cilantro sauce and cumin roasted chickpeas.
Add the cilantro, garlic, cumin essential oil, cardamom l in a food processor. Process until the mixture is mixed together and finely chopped. While running the food processor, slowly drizzle the in the olive oil. Scrape down the sides, add salt and pepper and blend until sauce is smooth.
cumin roasted chickpeas
Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
Place the chickpeas in a bowl and toss with the olive oil, cumin essential oil, olive oil, salt and pepper until evenly coated. Spread the chickpeas in an even layer on a rimmed baking sheet and bake until crispy, about 45 minutes.
1. I bought the mild harissa sauce, not realizing it was really mild. If you add a hot harissa sauce then I would forego the cayenne powder.
2. I always try and use avocado oil when I am roasting at high temperatures because it has a very high smoke point. You can use olive oil just as easily.
3. If you do not wish to use the cumin essential oil you can substitute 1 teaspoon cumin in both areas of the recipe.
*We use doTERRA essential oils for cooking because of their high quality and purity. You do not have to use essential oils for this recipe but if you do make sure they are food grade and safe for internal consumption. Check out my recipe notes on how to make this recipe without essential oils if you so desire. Enjoy!