All about … Harissa Paste

All about … Harissa Paste

We have Tunisians to thank for this culinary wonder tool. Simply put, it’s made from chillies and red peppers, some garlic, oil and spices all blended to a smooth paste that you can basically add to any dish.

Your guests will think you’ve been cooking for days! Try harissa sweet potatoes, harissa-flavoured eggs for breakfast, chicken tagine with harissa or platters of mixed roasted veg crusted with harissa.

Got the idea?

Harissa Paste is believed to have originated in Tunisia, but the neighbours in Morocco also use plenty of this spicy yet well-rounded paste to enliven their dishes.

So what do North African cooks include in a typical Harissa?

Think dried chillies, roasted red peppers, fresh garlic, coriander seed, saffron, cumin and serrano peppers. That said, there are numerous variations.

Harissa is the friend of hearty soups, stews and couscous and is often mixed with olive oil to create a dip for bread. It also makes a great rub for meat and a spicy topping for burgers or sandwiches. Harissa Paste is so versatile that you can incorporate it into just about any dish, be it a meaty stew or a vegetarian dish.

What makes Pesto Princess’s Harissa Paste so exceptional?

Our version is a fresh product, made exactly as you would in your own kitchen, without added preservatives. Because of the fresh ingredients, Pesto Princess’ Harissa needs to be kept in the fridge at all times and will last 90 days from the date of manufacture. You need less than a tablespoon of product to transform a dish since we’ve made sure that our interpretation of this North African classic is highly concentrated – a little goes a long way. It also happens to be dairy-free, making it suitable for a host of vegan dishes.

Some tips from Pesto Princess on how to use this delicious paste:

Slice sweet potatoes into skinny chips toss in harissa, oil, cinnamon, cumin and sea salt. Bake off in the oven until crisp and serve with harissa mayo on the side.

Marinate fish fillets in harissa mixed with yoghurt. Pan fry gently on each side.

Prepare harissa-roasted lamb shoulder for Sunday lunch, by rubbing ½ cup of harissa inside and out. Serve with a garlicky yoghurt sauce and naan bread, and eat with your fingers.

How to store your Pesto Princess Harissa Paste:

Spoon paste into ice cube trays, and once frozen, store in a zip lock bag, for portioning out as needed. The whole jar can also be stored in the freezer without cracking.

Keep this fresh paste in the fridge. Always. If your fridge is not that cold, rather store in the freezer to prolong shelf life.

Keep it clean
Always dip in with a clean spoon to avoid contamination. No added preservatives, remember 🙂


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