Harissa can be used as a side dish to accompany a main meal, or mixed with olives for a spicy starter or used as a marinade for your choice of meat or fish.






Skill level

Average: 3.1 (78 votes)


  • 1 large red capsicum (bell pepper)
  • 250 g (½  lb) small hot red chillies, stalks removed, roughly chopped (or use milder long red chillies for a less fiery result)
  • ½ preserved lemon
  • 1 large garlic clove
  • 1½ tbsp bunch coriander (cilantro), chopped
  • 1 tbsp ground cumin
  • ½ tsp salt
  • olive oil, to cover


Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


Makes 1½ cups. The following recipe has been tested and edited by SBS Food and may differ slightly from the podcast.

Standing time 1 hour

Preheat oven to 180˚C. Place capsicum on an oven tray lined with baking paper and roast for 40-50 minutes, turning every 10 minutes, or until browned and softened. Set aside to cool.

Mince the roast capsicums, chillies, preserved lemon and garlic by hand or pulse in a food processor. Mix with the coriander (cilantro), cumin and salt until well combined.

Let the mixture stand for 1 hour, then transfer to a preserving jar and cover with oil. Store indefinitely in the refrigerator.


Hassan M’Souli is the chef at Sydney’s Out of Africa Restaurant and the author of two cookbooks, the latest being Make It Moroccan.


Photography by Alan Benson. Styling by Michelle Noerianto.