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muhammara recipe (turkish red bell pepper and walnut dip)

December 08, 2010

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I know those holiday parties are coming up and I thought another hors d’oeuvre post would be helpful.  My good friend Cheryl gave me this recipe.  She is an outstanding cook and everything she makes is a home run.  I love the fact that this dip is mostly roasted red bell peppers and walnuts and it is easy-peasy to put together.  A bonus is that it tastes better if you make it ahead and we all know how much I like to prep in advance.   You can certainly use jarred roasted peppers or the ones that you can find in some deli cases, but I find (no surprise, I’m sure) that the ones you make at home taste so much better.  Maybe it’s all that love that goes into them!

A note about the pomegranate molasses:  I try not to use ingredient that are expensive, hard-to-find or that have a short shelf-life.  I found pomegranate molasses easily at my local Whole Foods and it cost only about $4.  Also, it lasts for a long time, so I didn’t hesitate to keep it on the ingredient list.  However, if you can’t find any and you don’t live close enough to me to borrow it, you can add a drop of raw honey and some extra lemon juice to mimic the tart-sweetness that pomegranate molasses brings to the dish.

Here I am serving it with endive leaves and gluten-free sweet potato chips, but feel free to go with the traditional pita or other raw vegetables.

muhammara

Makes 2 cups

1 ½ cups raw walnuts

½ cup fresh bread crumbs

3 red bell peppers, roasted, peeled, seeded and chopped, about 1 ½ cups or 1 12-ounce jar

¼ cup unrefined, cold-pressed extra-virgin olive oil, plus more to taste

2 Tablespoons pomegranate molasses plus more to taste

1 Tablespoon fresh lemon juice

A few shots of hot sauce or ¼ teaspoon ground red chiles, or to taste

1 teaspoon sea salt

1 teaspoon ground cumin

Toasted pita, your favorite chips or endive leaves

  1. In the bowl of a food processor fitted with the metal blade, add the walnuts and bread crumbs.  Process until finely chopped.
  2. Add the roasted peppers and olive oil.  Process until smooth.  Add the remaining ingredients (except the pita) and blend.
  3. Taste and adjust with more oil, molasses and/or salt.
  4. Refrigerate, covered until ready to serve.  The flavors will come together as the dip sits.  Serve with pita, chips or endive leaves.

5 Responses to “muhammara recipe (turkish red bell pepper and walnut dip)”

  1. Krista says:

    Do you think pecans would be fine to use. I have a large amount of those and no walnuts so wondering about swapping them. thanks K

    • Pamela says:

      I have had success in the past in other recipes swapping pecans for walnuts, but I haven’t tried them here so I can’t say. Like walnuts, pecans are soft, so I think they’ll blend perfectly well. The taste of pecans is sweeter than walnuts, so I wonder how that would affect the taste. Let me know if you go for it.

  2. DJ says:

    How many days in advance can this be made?

    • Pamela says:

      Several days in advance, but I prefer it at room temp, so leave it out of the fridge for a bit before serving. If it’s too firm, toss it in the food processor with a drop of olive oil. It’s delish!

  3. Melissa says:

    This is delicious! We made it for a dinner party and happily nibbled on the leftovers for days.

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