I recently saw a version of Middle Eastern-inspired dip featured on a popular cooking show, and it looked fantastic. The version below includes some Aleppo chili flakes, which come from Turkey and have a unique, sweet, deep spicy flavor. The recipe can be amended to include whatever fresh herbs that you like.
It can be served with some flatbread, scooped up as a dip for vegetables, or even served in lettuce wraps.
Muhammara Dip with Fresh Herbs
- 3 red bell peppers, cut in half, seeds removed
- ¾ cup walnuts, lightly toasted
- ½ cup fresh breadcrumbs, finely chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, finely minced
- 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 2 Tbsp pomegranate molasses
- Zest from 1 lemon
- Juice from 1 lemon
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 2 tsp Aleppo chili flakes
- ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
- Kosher salt & freshly-ground black pepper, to taste
- ¼ cup fresh parsley, roughly chopped, as garnish
- ¼ cup fresh mint leaves, finely sliced, as garnish
- A drizzle of olive oil, to finish
- Preheat your oven to 450F.
- Cut the red bell peppers in half, and remove the seeds and stems.
- Place the peppers on a baking sheet, skin side up, and roast them in the oven for about 20 minutes, or until the skins are charred and blistered.
- Remove the peppers from the oven, and place them in a bowl.
- Cover the bowl with plastic wrap, and let the peppers sit in their own steam and cool down for about 10 minutes.
- Once the peppers are cool enough to handle, peel off the skins and discard them.
- Reserve the roasted pepper flesh in a separate bowl.
- In a food processor, combine the toasted walnuts, bread crumbs, garlic, olive oil, pomegranate molasses, lemon juice, cumin, cayenne pepper, salt, and freshly-ground black pepper.
- Pulse the ingredients until they are finely ground and well combined.
- Add the roasted red bell peppers to the food processor and pulse again briefly until the peppers are just barely incorporated into the mixture.
- Transfer the dip to a serving bowl, and garnish with the fresh parsley and mint.
- Drizzle with a heavy pour of olive oil, and serve.
If you prefer your dip to be less spicy, omit the cayenne pepper and cut down on the quantity of Aleppo chili flakes.