YOUR HEALTHY PLATE: Spicy Harissa

This past week my mom brought over a gift of a bag full of beautiful little orange Habanero peppers from her garden. Lucky for me, she had no idea how spicy they would be. I’m guessing that it was just about at the point of taking that first little taste that she realized how perfect they would be. For me, that is.

This recipe makes about 1 cup. You can use it in anything. Be careful; less is more.

2 cups Habanero chiles, stems and seeds removed
10 sun-dried cherry tomatoes
1/4 cup olive oil
1 clove garlic, peeled
1 tsp. Kosher salt
1/2 tsp. cumin

WARNING: Wear gloves, and do not touch the chiles with your bare hands. Keep your gloves on until the knife, cutting board and blender have been washed well. Don’t touch your face, either. 

Place chiles, tomatoes, garlic, salt and cumin in a blender or food processor and blend until thickened. Add one teaspoon of water until you reach the desired consistency, which can be anything from a paste to a runny sauce. Store your prized possession in the fridge, and feel free to use it on everything from sandwiches to soup to nuts. Habaneros are among the hottest peppers in the world. If that seems like overkill, feel free to make this recipe with jalapeños or even banana peppers.

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