Muhammara: Red Pepper Dip

Muhammara: Red Pepper Dip

Remember when I told you about some of the foods I hate but wish I liked? Well, my tastes have evolved quite a bit since I shared that post a year and a half ago… who knew that was possible?! First, I shared my new love of mint in mint infused water and mojitos. Then I fell for salmon, baked in parchment paper or broiled with orange cream. And now, bell peppers. I really never saw this day coming. I sampled this roasted red pepper dip in my cooking class and was shocked by how much I liked it. I even wrote in my notes, “Doesn’t taste like peppers too much,” which is a nice way of saying, “Not disgusting!” David thinks this dip does taste peppery, so maybe I’m just coming around to the flavor. This dip is multi-dimensional with spicy and tangy undertones. It’s great party food. Or dinner food paired with crispy pita chips when you’re home alone and can do whatever you want.

Muhammara: Red Pepper Dip

To make this dip, begin by roasting 2 red bell peppers. Just put them directly on a gas burner to char, rotating the peppers until they are totally blackened. My mom roasts lots of peppers at once under her oven’s broiler.

Muhammara: Red Pepper Dip

Once charred, put the peppers in a plastic bag and let them cool at room temperature. The peppers will steam themselves in the bag.

Muhammara: Red Pepper Dip

Once cool, hold the peppers under running water, and brush off their skins. Split the peppers open and rinse out the seeds and membranes.

Muhammara: Red Pepper Dip

Put the roasted peppers into a blender. Add in about 1/2 cup of walnuts, 2 chopped garlic cloves, 1 teaspoon of pepper flakes, 1 teaspoon of cumin, 1 tablespoon of lemon juice, a pinch of salt, and 1.5 tablespoons of pomegranate syrup.

Muhammara: Red Pepper Dip

You can find pomegranate syrup in some supermarkets, but mine didn’t carry it. Fortunately, it’s easy to make your own! Just buy a bottle of pomegranate juice, and pour it into a pot. Simmer the pomegranate juice until it reduces into a syrup. As the water cooks off, it will stop bubbling even though it remains on the heat. Once it reaches that stage, the syrup should easily coat the back of a spoon. Remove the syrup from the heat, let it cool, and then store it in a jar in the fridge. It’s sweet and tangy.

Muhammara: Red Pepper Dip

Blend the red pepper dip until it is smooth. Taste the dip, and add more of any of the ingredients you think it needs. I adjusted pretty much everything but the peppers and walnuts. Blend again. If you want the dip to have a thicker consistency, you can blend in some breadcrumbs.

Muhammara: Red Pepper Dip

This dip is great served with crisped up pita. Just slice a pita into wedges, and bake it in the oven at 325 or 350ยบ F until it browns and crisps. It’s also great spread on a sandwich. If you’re not a pepper lover like me, this dip just might help bring you around. Now if anyone could help me like goat cheese…(never going to happen).

Shopping list:

  • Red bell peppers- 2
  • Garlic- 2 cloves
  • Walnuts- 1/2 cup
  • Lemon- 1
  • Pomegranate syrup- 1.5 tablespoons
  • Cumin- 1 teaspoon
  • Pepper flakes- 1 teaspoon
  • Salt
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Comments

Muhammara: Red Pepper Dip — 7 Comments

  1. You can skip the plastic bag step and keep plastic bags out of the landfill! Some say to use a brown paper lunch bag, but you don’t even need that! Just set them on a plate or the cutting board and wait a few minutes. You know people have been roasting peppers for thousands of years before ziplock bags were invented!

    • I’m not sure that a paper bag would do a good job containing the steam, but an overturned bowl or other sealed container would do the trick. Thanks for the thoughtful idea!

  2. Pingback: Pomegranate Gin & Tonics + Herb & Lou’s Mixology | Witty in the City

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