Do you like it chilli-hot?

On Sunday, I cooked dinner for some dear friends in Sydney.

Since they’d been kind enough to lend us their place for the weekend, I went to more trouble than I’d normally make for Sunday night dinner.

There was a rack of pork, roast carrots, a salad and not one but two sauces.

Which reminded me of one of my favourite ways of injecting a little (or lot) of heat into my cooking.

It’s called harissa and is a sauce / spice paste that hails from Morocco.

It varies in chilli intensity from radio-active to a gentle warming glow.

While I love the super intense version based on fresh chilli, this more mellow roast harissa is no slouch in the flavour department.

Use it with roast or BBQ meats, fish or veg. Also lovely on sandwiches.

roast chilli harissa
makes about 1 cup

2 large red capsicum (bell peppers)
12 long red chillies
2 teaspoons carraway seeds
2 teaspoons smoked paprika
1 tablespoon sherry vinegar

1. Preheat your oven or overhead grill on it’s highest setting.

2. Place capsicum (peppers) and chilli in a baking tray and grill or roast, turning every now and then until blackened and charred all over.

3. Cover with foil and allow to cool.

4. Remove the skins and seeds from the capsicum (chilli) and do the same with the chilli. Leave some or all chilli seeds in if you like it hot!

5. Whizz capsicum & chilli flesh with the carraway seeds, paprika and vinegar.

6. Stir in 3-4 tablespoons olive oil. Taste. Season and add more oil if it’s too hot.

Jules x

ps. There are plenty of other ideas to keep the hot heads happy in the Tired & Hungry Cooks Companion.

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