Harissa Salsa Roja from ClosetCooking.com

A salsa roja and Tunisian harissa chili pepper paste hybrid that is full of flavour and spicy heat!

Servings: 1/2 cup

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Soak Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
  • 4 ounces dried red chilies*
  • 4 plum tomatoes, quartered
  • 1 medium onion, cut into 8 wedges
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds, toasted and ground
  • 1 teaspoon coriander seeds, toasted and ground
  • 1 teaspoon caraway seeds, toasted and ground
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice (~1/2 lemon)
  • salt to taste
  1. Pour boiling water over the chilies, let them soak for 30 minutes and optionally remove the seeds.
  2. Meanwhile, place the tomatoes, onion and garlic, drizzle with oil and broil or grill until slightly charred, about 10 minutes.
  3. Puree the chilies, and roasted vegetables, cumin, coriander, caraway and paprika in food processor or blender.
  4. Heat the oil over medium-high heat, add the chili pepper mixture and simmer until it thickens, about 5 minutes.
  5. Mix in the lemon juice and season with salt and pepper.

Note: Pretty much any dried red chilies work. The traditional one would be piri piri but chilies de arbol, cayenne, chipotle, guajillo, ancho, mulato, pasilla, etc. can all be used. Choose the chilies based on what's available, the desired level of heat and flavour profile and feel free to mix different chilies.