This comes from my sous chef at Jungle Jims, Kay Hitzler.
Kay’s muhammara dip
If you don’t have a bird’s eye pepper, sub in your favorite hot pepper or red pepper flakes.
Pomegranate molasses is a syrup of boiled pomegranate juice. Balsamic stands in nicely if you don’t have pomegranate.
3 large red bell peppers
1 red Bird’s eye chili pepper, chopped
1 clove garlic, crushed with 1 teaspoon salt
1-1/4 cups walnuts, coarsely chopped
1/3 cup lightly toasted fresh bread crumbs
1 tablespoon pomegranate molasses
Lemon juice to taste
1 tablespoon hot water
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, plus extra to drizzle
Pita bread, lavash, flatbread, crackers or French bread for serving
Cut red peppers in half, remove membranes and seeds.
Place cut side down on cookie sheet.
Broil or roast in hot oven (450) until skins blacken.
Place in bowl and cover with plastic wrap. This helps steam and soften skin. When cool enough to handle, peel away as much blackened skin as you can.
Chop peppers coarsely.
In a food processor add peppers and everything else except olive oil.
Process to rough paste, scraping down sides to mix thoroughly.
With motor running, pour in oil in slow stream. Blend mixture until thick and creamy.
Cool and refrigerate up to a couple days.
Adjust seasonings before serving and drizzle with a bit of olive oil.
Serve with pita, lavash, flatbread, crackers or French bread.
Makes about 2 cups.
Gussied up pita bread or lavash: brush with olive oil, sprinkle on some sesame seeds, Greek seasoning or zaatar and run under the broiler just until golden. Cut into wedges and serve.
Gift from the kitchen
Pour muhammara into a glass jar, label and tie with raffia.
Line a small basket with a holiday cloth napkin. Place the muhammara dip in the basket with a box of quality crackers. Include the recipe!