I used to know someone from Libya, who taught me much about food, including how to fry an egg. How to get to 30 and not know that they were best cooked on a low heat… But never mind, I made one this evening to accompany another delight he introduced me to.

Harissa is a pepper/chilli paste which originates from North Africa. The recipe I used today didn’t result in quite the same paste that is available from Asian supermarkets in these parts but I was immensely pleased that many of the ingredients came from the back garden.


fennel seed, chillies, garlic and coriander seed from the garden

If I made harissa again, I would probably reduce the amount of fennel seed. The recipe called for 5 tablespoons of them, but as it was I used 5 teaspoons and that was more than enough. 

Sadly, also, my chillies lacked heat. Raw they have some punch but cooked, that generally disappears. So, another time I would add them after I’ve cooked the peppers, garlic and onion. But perhaps your chillies are different!

the finished product


About Helen

I have always been interesting in living a more environmentally friendly lifestyle and used to do what I could. Now, I have come to realise that we have reached such a point in terms of environmental degradation that it is more important - perhaps - to focus on building resilience. I therefore do as much as I can to reuse, grow my own and encourage a supportive community, for example. I also keep reading and learning all the time.
This entry was posted in Gardening, In the kitchen, Social and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Harissa

  1. Linda Penney says:

    lovely post thank you for sharing have a blessed day Helen

  2. I adore Harissa .. One of those ‘must haves’ in the kitchen

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