Tuesday, 9 December 2008

Rose harissa paste

This recipe makes between 150 and 200 grams of harissa paste.

What goes in...
  • 100 grams of dried red chillies (or 120 grams of fresh red chillies)
  • 8 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 cup of edible fresh or dried rose petals (or 1/4 cup of dried petals)
  • 1 tablespoon of cumin powder
  • 1 tablespoon of coriander powder
  • 1 teaspoon of sea-salt
  • Olive oil
A note on the rose petals... If you happen to have a garden full of blooming roses, and they have not been sprayed with anything nasty, then simply add about one rose worth of fresh, fragrant, red petals. Another source of culinary rose petals might be a high-end tea shop (make sure it is 100% rose petal, not rose-infused tea). An alternative might be culinary rose essence. Steer clear of dried rose petals that are designed for pot pourri as they have probably had perfume added to them. Similarly, stay away from shop bought "fresh" roses as they have most likely been sprayed. The provenance of the rose is therefore very important and if you're not 100% sure - do not add this ingredient at all.

To make..
  • In a covered pan, boil the chillies (minus the stems) in a very small amount of water for about 5 minutes. If there is any water left, drain it off and discard. Advisable to have the kitchen extractor fan on high when you're doing this as the steam can be brutally spicey to pets, loinfruits, and those with a tender sense of smell. Do not ever, ever, ever allow all those chillies to burn or you'll have to be put into an oxygen tent for the remainder of your life. This is a drag, as you're only ever allowed to suck grey protein mush through a straw if you're in an oxygen tent.
  • Blend (BaMix baby) to a smooth paste, adding olive oil to achieve the right consistency.
  • Place in a jar, drizzled with more olive oil to seal it.
Will keep in the fridge for at least two months.


Herbert Goodenough said...

Ok so the heavy humour almost put me off- but the new Hairy Bikers diet book recipe(uk 2012) needed rose harrissa. Had been in Istanbul this year and visited the Spice Market, so had images in my head and not frightened by the ingredients. Went into the garden and picked a trio of red roses( frozen as it is December here in Scotland ), ground the spices from the seeds we bought, sieved. Boiled the chilli's and added the garlic at the end just to knock them back a bit ( a trick Lady Claire MacDonald uses, again a scottish reference) and ended up with a taste not unsimilar to a dish we had at an Otterman Banquet on the Asian side of Istanbul. So it works and good eating

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