This is one dish that we happily adopted from Syria, and most specifically Aleppo. It was originally served next to grilled kebabs, but it is not served simply as part of a mezze. It is supremely healthy, versatile and delicious; I just love it and make it on a regular basis. I have seen chefs use raw red peppers, but I prefer to broil mine before using them. Once the peppers are charred, wrapped in plastic for a minute, then peeled and deseeded, the muhammara can be made in minutes in the food processor. It can be frozen as well and used in dozens of ways. Muhammara means something that has been reddened, presumably over coals.
MuhammaraJoumana Accad Mediterranean, Middle Eastern December 29, 2020 Condiments, Mezze/Appetizers, Pantry, vegan, Aleppo food, mezze, syrianfood, dip, lebanesefood, redpepper, walnuts,
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
3 or 4 red bell peppers
1 cup walnuts, previously soaked in water for one hour
1/4 cup red pepper paste
1/4 cup tahini
1 Tbsp pomegranate molasses
1 tsp (or more) chili paste or hot sauce or Aleppo pepper or chili powder of your choice
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp mahlab (optional)
1 tsp salt, to taste
1 tsp garlic paste (fresh garlic cloves mashed)
1/2 cup dry breadcrumbs (optional) or ground-up kaak
1/2 tsp black or white pepper
3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- Place the red bell peppers on a cookie sheet over a piece of foil in the oven set to broil. Broil for 20 minutes, turning the pieces every few minutes until charred all over. Remove from the oven, wrap in the foil and let them cool before peeling them and deseeding them. Place in the bowl of a food processor.
- Add the drained walnuts, and all the other ingredients, less the olive oil. Add the olive oil through the feed tube, adjusting the quantity per the texture desired. Transfer to a bowl, and serve with crackers, or chips or grilled meats or fish or chicken or for breakfast, the Turkish way.
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