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Rose Harissa

Rose Harissa

Rose Harissa

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Spice 101 is our series that will make you brave, then crave, a spice or blend you’ve never tried before — and offer enough tips and recipes to get it off your pantry shelf, and into your plate.
History

Harissa, a spicy condiment originating from North Africa, particularly Tunisia, boasts a rich history steeped in culinary tradition. Originally crafted from hot chili peppers, garlic, and a blend of spices such as coriander, cumin, and caraway, harissa served as a versatile staple in Maghreb (the region of north Africa lying west of Egypt) cuisine. Its fiery flavor profile and robust aroma quickly spread across the Mediterranean and Middle Eastern regions, where it became integral to various dishes, from couscous to grilled meats.

Yotam Ottolenghi, a prominent figure in modern Mediterranean cuisine, played a pivotal role in popularizing rose harissa through his innovative recipes and culinary influence. Ottolenghi's use of rose harissa showcased its ability to impart a unique floral complexity to dishes, capturing the attention of chefs and home cooks alike. His creative approach and widespread acclaim helped introduce rose harissa to a global audience.

Summary

Rose harissa incorporates the traditional spicy base of harissa with the delicate fragrance of roses. This infusion introduces subtle tartness and floral complexity, distinguishing it as a cherished ingredient in contemporary Mediterranean and Middle Eastern cuisines.

Ingredients

Guajillo Flake, Roses, Caraway, European Coriander, Smoked Sweet Paprika, Garlic, Hungarian Paprika, Chile Pepper, Cumin Seed, Kosher Salt, Citric Acid, Indonesian Cinnamon

Why We Love It

Rose harissa enriches dishes with depth and sophistication. The addition of roses enhances the aroma and balances the traditional spiciness of harissa with gentle sweetness and tanginess. Its versatility makes it ideal for marinades, dips, dressings, and as a flavor enhancer in soups and stews.

The More You Know

In contrast to traditional harissa, known for its intense heat, rose harissa offers a more nuanced flavor experience. While retaining the spicy base, rose harissa introduces floral notes and a touch of acidity. This makes it appealing to those seeking a complex flavor profile that includes floral and citrus elements.

Rose Harissa