As a dietitian and food blogger, I'm always on the hunt for new ingredients to use in healthy, plant-based recipes. There are two ingredients in particular that have been popping up constantly in my Instagram and Pinterest feeds: harissa and dukkah. I had to give them a try.
But wait...harissa? Dukk-what? Sounds a little 'out there', I know, but thankfully, I was forced to look no further than our local Trader Joe's for both the harissa and the dukkah, as well as everything else needed to make this colorful plant-based dish.
Harissa and dukkah both have North African/Middle Eastern roots, making them a perfect accompaniment to the pomegranate, chickpeas, and tahini also used in this recipe. Harissa is a chili pepper paste that often also includes olive oil, garlic, and spices. Dukkah is a seasoning blend made with nuts, sesame seeds and spices like cumin, coriander, and fennel.
I came up with this recipe as a simple way to incorporate both ingredients into the same dish. Tossing the carrots and chickpeas in a harissa-based sauce before roasting adds just the right amount of hot and spicy flavor. For more nuttiness, a sprinkle of dukkah and a drizzle of tahini on top, along with the perfect juicy punch from fresh pomegranate arils.
Enjoy on its own or try serving these roasted carrots and chickpeas over salad greens or any cooked whole grain (brown rice, quinoa, and farro all sound great). It works well as both an entree or side dish, making it a good option for holiday parties or anytime you want to accommodate someone with a dietary restriction (this recipe is vegan/vegetarian, gluten-free, and dairy-free too).
This dish incorporates so many of the ingredients that I'm loving most right now, including my two new North African/Middle Eastern favorites. I'm just beginning to get to know you, harissa and dukkah, but I think we are going to be very (very) good friends.
[clickToTweet tweet="A simple way to try #harissa and #dukkah at home! Harissa Roasted Chickpeas & Carrots" quote="A simple way to try harissa and dukkah at home! Harissa Roasted Chickpeas & Carrots"]
- 1 15 ounce can drained, rinsed, and thoroughly dried chickpeas
- 20 small peeled carrots about 2 cups
- 1 tablespoon harissa
- 1 teaspoon honey or maple syrup for vegan
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
- Salt and pepper
- 1/4 cup pomegranate arils
- 1 tablespoon runny tahini
- 1 tablespoon dukkah seasoning
Preheat oven to 400º F and spread chickpeas and carrots on a baking sheet and set aside.
Whisk together harissa, honey/maple syrup, balsamic vinegar, sesame oil, and salt and pepper. Pour over chickpeas and carrots and toss lightly until fully coated. Place baking sheet on center rack of oven and roast until carrots are tender, and chickpeas are golden brown, about 30 minutes.
Remove baking sheet from oven and transfer carrots and chickpeas to a serving dish. Add pomegranate arils, drizzle tahini over top, and sprinkle with dukkah before serving. Enjoy!