August 25, 2021 by D.Fathia
Updated August 25, 2021

Homemade green harissa: a condiment to adore

Homemade green harissa: a condiment to adore

Spicy food is the sacred beloved of all North African people and some middle eastern. In Tunisia, we love spicy food so much, particularly harissa, that we named ourselves the nation of harissa. This sizzling tasty blend is usually used in advertisements, songs, and propagated as a source of pride.

Harissa is the king of spicy foods and the royal dish everyone is addicted to. Differences do exist within the same country and between the different regions of North Africa, but the pillars of the recipe are the same.

Chili peppers are the basics of this condiment; how it is used and with what it is used makes all the difference. This blog post will walk you through the secrets of this time-old recipe and present you with various ways to make your personal share of this viral spice. Keep scrolling to discover the incredible taste and uses of green harissa and the traditional condiment we all adore.

What is green harissa?

Labels might often differ, but the essence is the same. Hearing news and reading foreign blog posts about Tunisian and North African condiments made me pose for a while. Honestly, I never thought we had a spice labeled green harissa! It turned out that we haven’t been labeling our own local recipes and others took the initiative.

After checking the ingredients listed in a certain article, I concluded that they referred to a kind of salad we prepare in Tunisia as green harissa because basically, it contains most of the items used to prepare homemade traditional red harissa paste.

This second variety is more versatile if you wish and can be customized to personal preferences. You can either use hot chili peppers or mild ones as per your tolerance towards spiciness. You can also control the ingredients used and hence the flavor and taste of the end result.

Here is a simple way to prepare this paste at home:


  • 1 tablespoon of ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon of ground coriander
  • Half a teaspoon of ground cardamom
  • 8 chili peppers
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1 tablespoon of lemon juice
  • Zest of a small lemon
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • Half a cup of olive oil

The preparation method:

First of all, cut the peppers into halves and put them in a pan on medium to low heat, along with the garlic cloves. Leave them to roast for five minutes and then peel off the peppers.

In another pan roast the cumin, coriander, and cardamom for a few minutes with constant stirring.

Put all ingredients in a food processor and blend. You will get a homogeneous green fragrant blend.

What’s important is that you can, as I said, customize the recipe to your own likings. You can, for example, used different kinds of peppers to control the degree of heat; you can either use peppers with medium heat or varieties with high heat. You can also control how much oil you pour into the blend.

Spices add excellent flavor and taste to the recipe, but if you do not stand spice you can dismiss some of them from the list.

Is it a salad or upgraded green harissa?

Tunisia can go wild and creative when it comes to eating chili peppers. The country is famous for another recipe that has gone global in recent years. For us it is a kind of salad, others might call it green harissa because it includes most of the traditional homemade harissa recipe’s ingredients.

To prepare this recipe you will need to make available all the ingredients from the above-mentioned recipe. You can omit some spices such as cardamom and cumin if you wish so, but you will have to add fresh tomatoes and onion.

You need to follow the same steps as the first recipe. The only addition is that you will have to roast the tomatoes and onions as well. You can count one tomato for every two peppers. For this quantity, two medium onions are enough. Preferably, you need to add two or three garlic cloves.

Mix the ingredient after roasting in a food processor, and then add the oil. As usual, you can control the amount of oil to pour according to your preferences.

Consumption of uses:

Both of the above-mentioned recipes are widely versatile and can be used in several ways with endless dishes. They are perfect with fish, roasted chicken, and barbecues. They are also a great addition to bland veggie or beans plates.

They add taste to your sandwiches beyond all expectations. Besides, they can be delicious dishes on their own.

If you take a tour around groceries and food markets, there are high chances that you will find these recipes in canned formats. However, homemade harissa is unparalleled. The best thing about homemade recipes is that you can control the amounts of all ingredients. So follow these simple steps and make your own spicy condiment now.


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