Riverford Wicked Leeks
Fresh red chilli harissa recipe image

Print Fresh red chilli harissa

Harissa is a versatile, spicy North African-style sauce. There’s a huge range of ready made pastes, but homemade is even more delicious, and it means you get to control the heat levels. Drizzle over mixed root veg before roasting; use as a marinade for meat or fish; add to soups, stews and dressings for a spicy kick; or stir a little through couscous. It keeps in the fridge for a couples of weeks, covered with a layer of oil, or freeze in ice cube trays and defrost as needed. Deseed the chillies for less heat or add extra chillies if you like it hot.


  • 3 red peppers
  • 5 medium to hot red chillies
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • ½ tsp each of toasted & ground cumin, coriander & caraway seeds
  • ¼ tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice, more to taste
  • 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • About 100ml olive oil


  1. Grill the peppers, turning now and then, until the skins have blackened all over. Put in a plastic bag (this helps the skins come away) and, when cool enough to handle, peel off the skins. Remove and discard the seeds, leaving the soft flesh.
  2. Place in a food processor or blender with the remaining ingredients, except the olive oil.
  3. Blitz to a coarse paste, then gradually add the oil and blitz until you have a smoothish but fairly thick sauce.
want to cook with fresh ingredients? try one of our award winning veg boxes