Liquid Red Pepper Power: Harissa

Red peppers have power. Harness it wisely. A popular ingredient across cuisines, bell peppers (capsicum annum) are a fruit of global consequence. Widely consumed and re-imagined in dishes, the red bell pepper is simply a green bell pepper that is left on the vine to continue to ripen. As it ripens, a red bell pepper will contain more than twice the vitamin C of a green pepper.

Try this Co-op staff favorite recipe for a fiery Tunisian hot sauce, known traditionally in north Africa and the Middle East as Harissa. Serve it on sandwiches, soups, tortillas, omelettes, or with rice/grain pilafs and dishes with tofu, steak, and/or beans.

Roasted Red Pepper Harissa Sauce

from Co+op Recipes


  • 2 large red bell peppers
  • 1 Anaheim pepper (or an additional red bell)
  • 1 jalapeño pepper
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

Directions: Preheat the oven to 425°F.   Line a sheet pan with aluminum foil. Place all the peppers on the pan and roast in oven for 30-45 minutes, turning frequently, until the peppers are blackened all around the outside and the flesh is very soft. Remove from oven, put the roasted peppers in a bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Let stand for 15-20 minutes.

While peppers are cooling, combine the spices, lemon juice and vinegar in a food processor or blender. When peppers are cool enough to handle, peel and discard the skins, stems and seeds. Add the cooked flesh of the peppers to the food processor and process on high until well blended. Slowly blend in the olive oil and season with additional salt and pepper to taste.

By: Claire

ClaireClaire Harlock Garber loves to eat and drink and write about it. She has worked in the food industry for nearly a decade and was on staff at the Skagit Valley Co-op from 2010-2018, writing the regular columns Skagit Brew Corner, The Cheese Whisperer, The Bounty of Bulk, and What's Dippin' in the Well for the Co-op's blog, as well as articles for the Natural Enquirer newsletter.