Monday, November 29, 2010

Muhamara- roasted red capsicum heaven!

Everyone knows I have a thing for red capsicums. Whether raw or roasted I just can't get enough of those red temptations. Don't get me wrong, I like the crispness of a fresh green cap and I've come to appreciate the yellow ones recently too, though always thought Chairman Kaga on Iron Chef had it wrong - he should've had a red capsicum!

There's something about red capsicums... I eat them like apples. It's strange, yes,Some of my friends don't touch the stuff and complain of indigestion. To me the thought of sinking my teeth into the crunchy, firm flesh and tasting the sweet, refreshing goodness sends me into a frenzy! So I'm always on the lookout for new ways to enjoy red capsicums - salads, soups, stuffed - though to me, raw is best!

Muhamara is a Levantian hot red pepper dip- along with hummus and baba ganoush a popular mezze on any Middle Eastern table. There are many versions depending on which country lays claim, but the key ingredient is red capsicum.

- 3 large red capsicums, roasted, peeled and deseeded
- 1/2 cup cashews
- 1/2 cup walnuts
- 1 large clove of garlic
- 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
- 2 tbs pomegranate molasses
- 1/4 cup olive oil
-. 1 tbs salt
- 1 tbs smoked paprika
- 1 tsp chilli powder
- 1 lemon

1. Dry fry the spices in a small, shallow pan and set aside to cool.
2. Pop garlic clove into blender and blend.
3. Add capsicums and nuts and pulse into chunky texture.
4. Pour in oil to combine mixture.
5. Add spices and season to taste. Note: If mixture is too dry add lemon juice, if it's too wet add more nuts.
6. Transfer into serving bowl, drizzle over a bit more oil, pomegranate syrup and sprinkle with smoked paprika.
7. Eat as a dip with bread, as a spread or sauce for grilled meat and fish. Note: It also keeps up to a week if stored in an airtight container in the fridge.


  1. I love muhamara! The sweet'n'sour pomegranate molasses totally makes it for me.

  2. My life has been sadly capsicum-bereft as my mother is allergic, but now that I've moved out I can start making amends for that! I think I'll have to start with this recipe, seeing as chilli, smoked paprike, and pomegranate molasses are some of my favourite things!


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