Harissa is hot chili paste made with peppers, spices and herbs and is of North African origin. Because of the wide variety of harissa paste that can be found at the market nowadays, this recipe is more of a method than a recipe. I urge you to taste your harissa chickpea "stew" every step of the way, adding lemon juice if you want more acidity, salt if the paste lacks in saltiness, and pasta water if it's too thick for your liking. I added leftover baked salmon to my bowl and it was that much better, but it can easily be left vegetarian without any meat or fish. I hope you give this a try, and enjoy!
Harissa Chickpea Pasta
Oil of choice
Pasta of choice (I prefer fusilli)
2-4 tablespoons harissa paste
1/2 teaspoon crushed black pepper
1/4 teaspoon paprika
Juice of 1/2 lemon
Salt, to taste
1 15 oz can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
Crumbled feta cheese
Chopped green onions or chives
(Optional) Protein of choice, such as grilled chicken or fish
1. Prepare pasta as per box instructions. Reserve 1 cup of pasta water; drain and toss pasta in a very light drizzle of oil to prevent sticking. Set aside.
2. In a large skillet over medium heat, add 2 tablespoons more of oil and the harissa pasta. Cook for 1-2 minutes, just until heated through. Add the black pepper, paprika, lemon juice. Taste for salt and more lemon juice, add more of each, to taste. Add in the drained and rinsed chickpeas and close with a lid; cook on low heat for 5-7 minutes until the chickpeas are fully heated through. Remove from heat.
3. Top your pasta with the chickpeas, then garnish with lots of feta cheese, chives, extra black pepper and (if using) your protein of choice. Enjoy!
All content is my own unless otherwise stated