cranberry harissa


This may be a little late, but if you're looking for more interesting side dishes/condiments for TY Day tommorrow: this is definitely not Betty Crocker's cranberry sauce. It's spicy, savory and tart. I'm making it to go with the Moroccan theme for our Thanksgiving meal.

Cranberry Harissa

  • 3-4 whole dried guajillo or New Mexico peppers
  • 1 large red bell pepper, sliced, about 1 1/2 cups
  • 1 cup fresh cranberries
  • 4-6 cloves peeled garlic
  • 2 tsp whole caraway seeds
  • 1 tsp whole cumin seeds
  • salt
  • olive oil

Slice each dried pepper into 4-6 pieces and discard the stem and most of the seeds. Soak in about 1 cup of hot water for 15-20 minutes. When the peppers are done soaking, you'll drain them but save the soaking water.

In a small saucepan, toast the cumin and caraway seeds until fragrant, around 3-4 minutes on medium heat. Set aside. You can skip the toasting if you're in a hurry.

Stem, seed and roughly chop the bell pepper.

Put garlic, seeds, both kinds of peppers, cranberries, and 1 tsp salt into a food grinder, Vitamix or food processor. Add 1/2 cup of the pepper soaking liquid. Puree, adding more soaking water if necessary to get the harissa to grind up.

Pour the puree into the saucepan. Taste and add salt if required. Cook over low heat until brick-red and reduced by 1/3 to 1/2, 30 to 40 minutes.

Cool. Put in jars for keeping, or bowls for serving, covered with a thin layer of olive oil. Makes 1.5 to 2 cups.