5.11.2009

muhammara, mmmmm

muhahaha My phone has been ringing off the hook. "When are you going to post the Muhammara recipe??" If you want to see empty plates, and full tummies, then this is the trick. I doubt that I've ever seen a plate empty out faster, and I can't encourage you to make this fast enough. I guarantee you'll thankful you did. Make a grocery list, and then run as fast as you can to track down the ingredients. A couple weeks ago, Jeff and I went to Sahara, a Lebanese restaurant, for our second dinner there. And it is mind-blowingly good, and it began that way from the very first piece of pickled turnip I tried. It's not complicated, but everything is succulent, delicious, and even makes you feel quite joyous deep down inside. It's also about having a good time, but when the table is full-to-the-brim with plates and platters of various sizes, it is just about impossible not to have a good time. I have to admit, we've been very lucky to go to Sahara with friends who don't order off the menu, loads of fun, except that then this means that I really don't know what many dishes are called. This isn't because no has told me the names of the dishes, but because I become so completely absorbed, in devouring everything in sight, just as giddy as you can imagine. I have since renamed every dish divine. Luckily just in time for Mother's Day, I received a recipe for muhammara (thanks D!); essentially a red pepper and walnut dip, but that is a paltry way to describe it. Honestly, it makes you think of everything you might want to eat. There is a little sweetness, some smokiness, and little heat for good measure. Then there's garlic, and then something that just piques the palate with delight. Now you just have to dip. It is great with bread, or pita, but also fantastically versatile with multitudes of vegetables. My favourite is carrots. Only dip once of course. Muhammara Adapted from Gourmet, December 1993 2 cups roasted red peppers, drained (I used jarred) 2/3 cup fine fresh bread crumbs 2/3 cup walnut pieces 4 garlic cloves, minced or through a garlic press 1 /2 lemon, juiced 1 teaspoon freshly ground cumin 1/2 teaspoon dried hot red pepper flakes salt, to taste 3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil vegetables/bread/pita 1. Add the walnut pieces to a food processor, and grind until very fine, but not quite a paste. 2. Heat a skillet on medium heat, and move the walnut mixture to the pan. Carefully toast, and stir frequently. 3. Prepare the breadcrumbs by drying bread in the microwave, and then whizzing in the food-processor, until very fine. 4. Once the walnuts have slightly cooled, add the red peppers, walnuts, garlic, lemon, cumin, red pepper flakes to the bread crumbs in the food processor. Pulse until thoroughly combined. 5. With the food processor running, pour in the extra-virgin olive oil, and continue to combine. Taste for salt, and adjust if necessary. Add more lemon if you prefer. 6. When serving, drizzle a little bit of extra-virgin olive oil over the top. Enjoy!

14 comments:

Julie said...

YUM. I love this stuff. My favourite is at Aida's, and I've never been able to quite recreate it. And they won't share the recipe! (The one published in the paper years ago is not quite the real one!)

Cheryl Arkison said...

I want to make this, but I want to eat at Sahara more... I have a birthday coming up.

Cookin' Canuck said...

Wow, this sounds fabulous! And so easy! I can't wait to try it (I already emailed this post to myself).

http://www.cookincanuck.com

Jen said...

Muhammara sounds too versatile and flavorful to resist. Thanks for the inspiration!

Tangled Noodle said...

This looks fantastic! I've never had it before but I don't doubt that it's delicious. Can't wait to try it asap!

Jenn said...

Yummy!! I haven't tried to many Lebanese dishes. Looks very similar to hummas, so I'll definitely like this.

rookie cookie said...

I'm all for dipping things into stuff. Never had this- but not for long.

Jason & Jason's BBQ Adventures said...

This looks absolutely wonderful and simple to make overall. Nothing beats a good ethnic dish.

Rebekka said...

I love your blog! Just found it today. Can't wait to read more :)

haleysuzanne said...

This looks divine - like romesco but even better. I have got to try it.

HoneyB said...

I have the chips, I'll be right over for the dip!

zerrin said...

I love this! We have a very similar dip like this called "ezme". Dipping french fries into this muhamara is my favorite.

AndreaQ said...

I've been looking for a muhammara recipe for the longest time. Thanks for posting this!

NIKKI said...

Looks lovely and simple. Thanks for sharing.

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