This favorite Tunisian hot sauce has become my favorite the first time I prepared it. This spicy, tangy sauce can be used as a salad dressing, for roasting vegetables, chicken or simply as a dipping sauce. This sauce can turn a simple vegetable into a flavor packed dish.

You can prepare this sauce in advance and refrigerate it for almost a month with a little bit of extra oil floating on top.
I will share some creations using this sauce very soon, till then enjoy it as a dip with crackers, pita or lavash!

Prep time: 5 mins

Cook time: 20 mins

Total time: 25 mins

Harissa: A spicy, tangy and a very versatile sauce!

Author: Nand

Recipe type: Side Dish

Cuisine: Indian

Serving Size: 1 Cup


  • Red bell peppers, whole – 2
  • Whole red chilies – 2
  • Garlic cloves, peeled – 3-4
  • Olive oil or vegetable oil – 2 tbs
  • Coriander seeds – 1 tsp
  • Caraway seeds – 1 tsp
  • Cumin powder – 1/2 tsp
  • Salt to taste
  • Vinegar – 1 tbsp (or lemon juice – 1.5 tbsp)
  • Sugar – 1/2 tsp


  1. For roasting the red bell pepper, coat the red bell peppers all over with oil and roast on an open flame, turning occasionally, until the skin is charred and blistered.
  2. Alternatively, you can roast the bell peppers in the oven at 200 degree C for about 15-20 minutes or until blistered and roasted.
  3. Once the red bell peppers are roasted, immediately put them in a bowl and close it with a lid. With the trapped steam the skin will become loose and will come off very easily after a few minutes.
  4. In a pan, add oil and once it is hot, put the garlic cloves, red chilies, coriander seeds and caraway seeds. Let the seeds turn aromatic, add chopped bell pepper, vinegar, salt and sugar. If the mixture looks very dry, then add a few tbsp of water in order for everything to simmer for a few minutes.
  5. Switch off the gas and let it cool down.
  6. Grind into a smooth paste.
  7. Adjust seasoning if required and store it in the fridge in an air tight container with a layer of oil floating on the top (if storing for more than 10 days).

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