Harissa Shrimp with Homemade Harissa Paste

Harissa Shrimp with Homemade Harissa Paste

These make great tacos!


4 ounces dried chiles of your choice
1 tsp caraway seeds
tsp coriander seeds
1 tsp cumin seeds
3 to 4 garlic cloves, peeled
1 tsp JF Universal Salt, or to taste
2 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for storing


1lb clean, fresh shrimp (tail on or off)
1 Tbsp harissa paste
2 Tbsp good olive oil
1 Tbsp unsalted butter (sub vegan butter)
1 clove garlic, chopped very fine


Place the chiles in a heatproof bowl and cover with boiling water. Let stand for 30 minutes.


While the chiles are soaking, toast the caraway, coriander, and cumin in a dry skillet over low-medium heat, occasionally shaking or stirring to prevent burning. When the spices are fragrant, remove them from the pan.


Grind the spices in a mortar and pestle, spice grinder, or coffee grinder. Drain the chiles, reserving the liquid.


Remove and discard the stems and seeds from the chiles. (Wearing gloves is optional but recommended to protect your hands.)


Combine the chiles, ground spices, garlic, and salt in the bowl of a food processor. (You can also use a mortar and pestle.)


With the food processor running, slowly drizzle in the olive oil and process to form a smooth and thick paste. Scrape down the sides of the bowl occasionally. If a thinner paste is desired, blend in a little of the chilI soaking liquid until the paste has reached your desired texture.


The flavor of the harissa will deepen over the next day or two, but you can taste it now and add more salt or other optional ingredients to your liking.


Transfer the harissa to a jar and cover the surface with a thin layer of olive oil. Cover the jar and refrigerate for up to a month, adding a fresh layer of olive oil on the top each time you use the harissa.


Harissa recipe adapted from The Kitchn.


Rinse and dry the shrimp on a paper towel.


In a large bowl combine the shrimp and the harissa paste and toss, coating the shrimp evenly. The Harissa is very concentrated, and you can always add more after cooking.


Heat oil in a large sauté pan on medium heat. Add garlic and soften slightly (30 seconds) be careful not to burn the garlic.


Add shrimp and cook until golden brown on each side. They are better crispy and dark golden brown.


Serve in butter leaf wraps or over white rice. Add avocado, mango, cilantro and white or red onion. These make great tacos.