Tag Archives: harissa

Recipe: Sprouted Chickpea Salad with Harissa and Mint Dressing


I have a bit of bad conscience about chickpeas. I’m not that fond of them. They’re OK once in a while, but to me there’s always a bit of an aftertaste of tea-towel to them. I once made a chickpea and spinach curry for Sharon, the other fat veggie, and a friend. They loved it and I couldn’t finish it. I like chickpeas in things – hummus and falafel for two – but not when they’re the main event.

There is an exception to this, though. I love them raw and sprouted. Then they’re sweet, crunchy with a mild nutty flavour.

And they’re really easy to make. Actually all pulse sprouts are easy to make. All you have to do is this:
1) soak pulses over night
2) in the morning rinse and drain pulses
3) leave in a covered, but not airtight, container in a dark place
4) in the evening rinse and drain pulses
5) leave in a covered, but not airtight, container in a dark place
6) repeat steps 2-5 until pulses have sprouted to your satisfaction

That’s it. The only rules are, after the initial soaking, don’t leave the pulses sitting in water and make sure that they have access to air when they’re sprouting. You can buy specialist sprouting jars that make the process easier, but you can get the same result with a jam jar with holes in the lid, or a bowl with cling film that doesn’t completely cover it.

You can grow the sprouts as long as you want them to be, maybe an inch or two for mung beans or puy lentils, but chickpeas are good as soon as they start to show little white shoots.

chickpeas photo DSCN0874_zps869760c9.jpg

Once you have your sprouts, you have to use them. I put together this great crunchy salad that showcases them properly. The dressing is an absolute star. I came across the idea as a marinade for roasting corn on the cob. It’s a great balance of spicy, hot and fresh flavours. I’m definitely going to use it again in other things.

chickpea salad photo DSCN0878_zps64d6f1e9.jpg

For the dressing:
Juice of 1 lemon
1 small garlic clove, chopped
1 tsp harissa paste
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp ground coriander
1 tbsp chopped mint
2 tbsp olive oil

For the salad
100g chickpeas (dry weight and then soaked and sprouted)
2 spring onions, chopped
100g cucumber, deseeded and chopped
1/2 medium carrot, chopped
1/2 red pepper, chopped

Does this need a method?
Mix all the dressing ingredients together.
Put the salad ingredients together in a bowl and mix.
Add the dressing to the salad and mix until coated thoroughly.

Serves 2 as a light lunch with green leaves and some bread

Recipe: Roasted Root Vegetables with Lemon and Harissa Dressing


I didn’t intend to make this recipe. I was just going to roast some excess red onions to make a basis for a salad and then I noticed I had a lot of things in the fridge that would benefit from some roasting as well. When I put the harissa and lemon on the root vegetables I just had to share it because it tastes so good. You have the sweetness of the roots, the heat of the harissa and the fragrant sourness of the lemon and it’s an unbeatable combination.

I used carrots, parsnips and butternut squash (not technically a root veg, I know!) because that’s what I had in the fridge, but turnip and sweet potato would be great in this as well.


2 medium carrots, chopped into large pieces
3 parsnips, chopped into large pieces
1/2 butternut squash, chopped into large pieces
Juice of 1 lemon
Zest of 1/2 lemon
1 tsp harissa paste

Pre heat the oven to 220C.
Put the vegetables on a roasting tray, rub with vegetable oil and season well with salt and pepper.
Roast for 30 minutes until the vegetables are cooked and a little brown round the edges.
Put the lemon juice, zest and harissa in a small bowl and mix thoroughly.
When the vegetables are cooked, remove the skin from the butternut squash.
Toss the vegetables in the dressing and serve.

Serves 2 as a warm main course salad with some green leaves for crunch.

Recipe: Chickpea and red pepper stew with harissa


This is from Nigel Slater’s Dish of the Day programme. It needs the lift of the lemon juice at the end. Another time I might put a bit of lemon zest into the stew as it cooks.

Chickpea & pepper stew with harissa

2 red peppers, seeded and sliced
10 cherry tomatoes, halved
2 tsp harissa paste
400g tin cooked chickpeas in water
juice of 1/2 a lemon
handful chopped coriander

Dry fry the peppers in a saucepan on a high heat until most of the pieces have a few charred specks on them. You’re not trying to burn them, just add a little roast pepper flavour to the stew.
Turn the heat down and add the tomatoes.
Stir for a couple of minutes as they release their juices.
Add the harissa paste and stir to coat the peppers and tomatoes.
Pour in the chickpeas including their water.
Cover and cook for 15 minutes, then cook for 15 more minutes with the lid off.
Pour in the lemon juice and stir in the chopped coriander.
Season. It will take quite a lot of salt.
Serve with cooked rice, couscous, quinoa or another grain.

Serves 2

Slimming World syns – According to the Food Optimising book, harissa paste is free on green. I am suspicious about that as the paste I used had a lot of oil in it. I would say this gets about 2 syns for the oil in the paste. Otherwise this is free on green.