As I sat in Shot Tower drinking a cup of their delicious coffee, I could not think about what to write for this post. What is muhammara anyway and why the hell am I making it? Fantastic question. I never thought you’d ask.
Muhammara is a dish of Syrian origin and no I did not grow up with it. I was actually searching around the web for fun way to use roasted peppers and I happened upon it. My friend Rebecca’s father apparently roasts peppers at home like it’s his job and sends her back with a quart of them frozen each time she sprints up the turnpike to see him. When I happened upon it, I decided to do some reading. I found that it contains garlic, nuts, lemon juice and apparently, pomegranate molasses. I was not about to go purchase pomegranate molasses just to make this recipe so instead I used some honey and added some lemon juice and zest for a little zing.
This recipe came out really well and it was fun to make too. I thought, since the peppers were already roasted, why not roast a few other things that go into this dish as well? I used a cast iron pan to roast the garlic cloves and the jalapeno before I added them to the food processor. I was watching Mexico One Plate At A Time in which Rick Bayless demonstrated the roasting garlic and jalapeno in a cast iron pan before making salsa. I knew I had to try it. If you think about it, this is kind of like a salsa except the main ingredient is the roasted peppers. On a sidenote, one of my friends who traveled to Turkey actually tasted this dish and she said it reminded her of a dip she had when she was there. I took that as a compliment.