Hi Guys! Today we have homemade harissa for you! Harissa is a spicy North African (although there are a number of varieties from all over) condiment that has a wonderful flavor. You can add it to pretty much whatever you want. I love stirring a little bit into my soups or even infusing a little bit into some of my sauces to give it a unique kick.
Since I was a little girl I’ve been fascinated with DIY cooking projects at home. I just find them very interesting, exciting and I love the whole “labor of love” thing, I really do. I feel accomplished when I tackle things like kimchi, ketchup, whole grain mustard, sausages, bacon, etc. There’s not too much that excites me more than being able to uncover and rinse something like my own my side of freshly cured pork belly after days and days of waiting, adjusting and waiting again. I think this is all because my mom made everything from scratch growing up and condiments was up there on her list. Although they were usually Korean foods/condiments she was making from scratch, I think it just gave me an overall itch to get my own DIY juices flowing.
Anyway, that takes us back to this harissa. I learned about this tasty condiment for the first time in culinary school, about 6 years ago, and have been in love ever since. Today we have two versions for you; I call them “mild” and “spicy”, but just a fair warning that they’re both quite spicy. One is just a thicker, more authentic North African kind of paste (the “spicy”), while the other is toned down with a roasted bell pepper and a bit more sauce-like. Another thing to mention is that I use ground spices for one of the recipes while instructing to use whole spices and to grind them yourself for the other recipe. You can use pre-ground spices for both if you want, no problem! I just included super basic instructions for both incase some people prefer to toast and grind there own spices…like me! Want to know the best thing about this condiment? It’s actually not a “labor of love”, it’s totally easy and you still get to feel very accomplished as you spoon your harissa into little jars.
With the holidays right around the corner, can you think of anyone special in your life that might want a delicious jar of homemade harissa?…maybe, yes?! Enjoy! xx, Jenny
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Homemade Harissa Two Ways
- 1 ounce guajillo chiles
- ½ ounce (chiles) de arbol
- 1 ounce pasilla chiles
- 1 roasted red bell pepper, seeded
- 2 garlic cloves, chopped
- 2 teaspoons mined marjoram
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- ½ teaspoon ground coriander
- ½ lemon, juiced
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- pinch of black pepper
- ¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 ounces chiles de arbol
- 2 ounces guajillo chiles
- 14 sundried tomatoes, not in oil
- 4 garlic cloves
- 1 lemon, juiced
- ½ teaspoon minced mint
- 2 teaspoons cumin seeds
- 1 ½ teaspoons coriander seeds
- ½ teaspoon caraway seeds
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- pinch black pepper
- ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
- For Mild: Place chiles into a bowl and top with boiling water. Cover and set aside for 1 hour. Once chiles have steeped, remove seeds and stems and place in a food processor with the remaining ingredients, except oil. Pulse 6 to 8 times. With the motor running, drizzle oil into mixture until a loose paste/sauce forms. Adjust seasonings, scoop into a jar, seal, and store in the refrigerator for up to 3 months.
- For Spicy: Place chiles into a bowl and top with boiling water. Cover and set aside. While chiles steep, toast spices in a skillet over medium heat for 4 to 5 minutes or until fragrant. Grind until a powdery consistence forms. Set aside. Once chiles have steeped, remove stems and seeds and place into a food processor with the remaining ingredients, except the oil. Pulse 6 to 8 times. With the motor running, drizzle oil into mixture until a loose paste/sauce forms. Adjust seasonings, scoop into a jar, seal, and store in the refrigerator for up to 3 months.
- *Makes 1 cup each
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Sorry just read it at the bottom!
I have always wanted to make harissa! So exited about this!
Bev @ Bev Cooks
I want to just smear this all over my face.
This is awesome! I had thought earlier that homemade Thai curry paste jars might make a nice gift — so would this beautiful stuff! I’m going to make the spicy one :) Great idea!
Anna @ Bashful Bao
I love harissa and can never find it in the grocery store…now I don’t have to!! :)
I’ve never had harrissa sauce. What do you suggest I put it on?
Kevin @ Closet Cooking
Nice! Homemade harissa is the beast!
These are both two wonderful recipes for the harissa sauce but I never saw marjoram used as an ingredient. I first made my own batch after my husband and I ate at the Cheesecake Factory a few months ago—my usually unadventerous husband tried the Morrocan chicken there and loved it so I had to scour the Internet and find one . I pretty much use the posted spicy recipe —but leave out the chile de arbol and replace with the roasted red peppers. I love the scent of the toasted spices and recently bought a spice grinder which definitely makes your life so much easier.
If you have an Aldi’s market in your area they carry a Parmesan couscous that is the bomb! Perfect for this dish as you can imagine. Happy eating all!
Those spoons are gorgeous!! Where are they from?