Muhammara

21 Mar

I was so proud of myself for discovery this dish and ‘expanding my horizons’. One day at work, I started talking to a coworker from Jordan about my new find. I was so elated that I had finally moved beyond the standard hummus and couscous. Not knowing very much about muhammara, I was asking questions about it origins, how it’s served, what to eat it with, etc. Only I couldn’t pronounce it correctly. Not even close. My coworker kept looking at me, well you know, with that ‘crazy girl’ look. Frustrated, I finally googled it with a picture. Oh, he says (light bulb glowing brightly), moo hahm’ mah rah.

Sigh!!!

Muhammara, by the way, means ‘of reddish origin’, or something like that. It’s traditionally made with red berries native to the middle east. Because we don’t have these berries in North America, this dish is often substituted with pomegranate juice or molasses. I’ve never seen pomegranate molasses so I substitute good ol’ Pom brand pomegranate juice.

This is a hot pepper middle eastern dish made of walnuts, sweet and hot red peppers. Don’t worry, you can adjust the ‘hotness’ to your liking.

Food processor required.

Recipe

2 cups walnuts, soaked in water for 8 hours

4 red bell peppers, quartered

1 cup sundried tomatos

1 garlic clove minced

1 lemon, juiced

1 Tbs olive oil

4 Tbs pomegranate juice

1/2 tsp cumin

salt to flavor

red pepper flakes, to flavor

1-2 tsp water, only if needed

Instructions:

1. Rub peppers in oil, place in dehydrator, sprinkle with salt, dehydrate on 115 degrees for 4 hours till soft. Of course, bell peppers can be roasted, or store bought too.

2. Drain walnuts and place in food proccessor. Process till crumbly.

3. Add red bell peppers,  sun-dried tomatos, lemon juice, garlic, olive oil and cumin in processor, process till smooth. Add water if needed.

4. Season with red pepper flakes.

Serve with bread pieces, or crackers. I use *chia crackers*. (recipe posted)

When gathering with friends and family for parties, reunions, game night, etc, there is always junk food everywhere…. chips, dips, cheeses, ooey-gooey tempting macaroni and cheese, pasta salad, chicken wings slathered in sauce, desserts made with sugar and flour. So, I always try to bring dishes I know won’t stray to far from my lifestyle. If other people enjoy my dish, then that’s wonderful.

This dish was definitely a hit at a small family gathering. Instead of exchanging super secret cookie recipes, these ladies wanted my muhammara dish. Fabulous:)

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