Muhammara (Red Pepper and Walnut Spread)

Muhammara from the Arabic word ‘ahmar’, means red. It originated from the Syrian city of Aleppo and is widely used in Syrian as well as Turkish cuisine. Traditionally it is made with Aleppo peppers which has a heat level of 10,000 on the Scoville scale (the measurement of spiciness of chili peppers based on the concentration of capsaicinoids ). While this dip or spread can be served with with a Mezze platter with kebabs, grilled meat, fish etc, it can also be served with toast or pita bread. I like to serve this with toasted baguettes topped with a mashed mixed bean salad. See Toasted Baguette with Mashed Beans Salad. You can serve this with toasted baguettes on its own too. It is light, healthy and delicious @sarchakra

PREP TIME: 20 mins

COOK TIME: 10 mins

YIELDS: Serves 2

Ingredients

  • Walnuts ¼ cup
  • Red bell pepper 1
  • Olive oil 2 tbsp
  • Panko breadcrumbs 3 tbsp
  • Dates syrup 1 tbsp
  • Lemon juice 1 tbsp
  • Pomegranate vinegar 2 tsp
  • Himalayan pink salt
  • Paprika 2 tsp, divided
  • Tahini paste 1 tbsp

Method

  • On an open flame roast the bell pepper. Use tongs to turn it around till all the sides are charred. Put in a bowl and cover with cling film. Leave it for 15 mins. Take the peel off- it should naturally fall off. Chop the bell pepper. Put in the mixer.
  • Toast walnuts in a slow flame for a few minutes till aromatic. Take care it does not burn. Cool. Crush a few walnuts and reserve for garnish. Put the rest in a mixer along with the roasted bell pepper.
  • Add into the mixer Panko breadcrumbs, Himalayan pink salt, paprika, tahini paste, pomegranate vinegar, lemon juice and dates syrup. Blitz.
  • Pour mixture in a bowl. Top with the reserved crushed walnuts, some paprika and a light drizzle of dates syrup.
Roast the red pepper on an open flame
Toast the walnuts
Mix all the ingredients in a mixer
Serve Muhammara with crushed walnuts, paprika and dates syrup
Closeup
Toasted Baguette with Mashed Beans Salad and Muhammara

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