Mussels in Harrissa sauce

Harrissa paste

2 red peppers  roasted, de-seeded and peeled

2 green chillis, chopped

6 cloves of garlic, chopped

1 large bunch of coriander with steams, chopped.

Juice of 2 lemons

Oil to blend

Salt and pepper to taste

1 tsp ground cumin

Blend all ingredients together until they form a smooth paste. This can be stored in the fridge for up to a week.

For the sauce

1 onion, finely chopped

2 cups cream or coconut milk

3 heaped tablespoons Harrissa paste

Fry the onions until soft and translucent. Add the paste and fry until fragrant. Add cream and coconut milk, and simmer until hot.

Add mussels, and cook about two to four minutes until heated through.

Serve with flat bread or toasted pita. I like to top mine with preserved lemon and herb salad, with some toasted sesame seeds.

This dish makes a perfect starter, or a tasty light lunch or supper.

This is my version of Harrissa paste which is used in most Moroccan food. I like the sweetness of the roasted red peppers, and the intensity of the chilli can be adjusted to suit your taste. This paste is great in tagine, or as a marinate for fish, chicken or roasted vegetables. It can also be used to make a great dressing when thinned out with lemon juice and a bit of honey. which in turn makes a great dressing for marinated olives. The possibilities are endless.

Happy experimenting and eating – enjoy!

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