Recipe: Harissa Chili Paste (or Harisa)

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Harissa (also Harisa) is chili paste used to flavor many north african dishes, specifically in Tunisia, Algeria, Libya, and western Sicily. The condiment can be made mild, medium, or hot. For those who don't feel like making Harissa from scratch, middle eastern markets sell the paste in cans. Whole Foods sells Harissa in the spice aisle (you just add water and olive oil to make the dry mix into a paste). The main components of Harissa: 2 ounces dried Guajillo chili peppers, soaked … [Read more...]

Menu: Algeria

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This menu represents what I found most exciting about Algerian food: the flavors are intense, the spices are hot, and the foods are a blend of the proverbial melting pot. Hummus bi'l Kammun (Chickpea Soup) [Recipe] Pureed chickpeas laced with garlic, cumin, paprika, and harisa. Algerian Sunset Salad [Recipe] Blood oranges, fresh fennel, black olives, and mint make up this unusual salad. Hot Algerian Lasagna (Shakhshukha al-Bisakra) [Recipe] This lasagna contains ground lamb … [Read more...]

About Algerian Food: Sand, ho! Algeria

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Look left. Sand. Look right. More sand. Yep, you guessed correctly. There's a whole lot of desert in Algeria. In fact, 80% of Algeria is covered by the Sahara Desert, forcing most of the population to live to the north, along the Mediterranean coast (source). The surplus of sand must have inspired the national dish: couscous (couscous is also the national dish of Morocco and Tunisia). Couscous is a very fine pasta shaped just like, well, grains of sand. A warm bed of … [Read more...]

Recipe: Llokume (Turkish Delight)

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Makes approximately 50 pieces Llokume was popularized in Eastern Europe and North Africa during the Ottoman empire. This recipe makes enough Turkish Delight to share. Bring the confection to a special friend or a party, and you will learn why Albanians are just one of many cultures that find this dessert delightful. Ingredients: For the candy: 4 cups granulated sugar 1 Tbsp real lemon juice 1 1/2 cup water, plus an additional 2 3/4 cups 1 cup cornstarch 1 tsp cream of … [Read more...]