Tangy Red-Pepper-and-Nut Dip

The classic Syrian nut dip muhammara typically contains walnuts, bread crumbs, Aleppo pepper paste and pomegranate syrup, but there are endless variations. The bright-flavored take here is adapted from a recipe by Anissa Helou's Syrian chef-friend Mohammed Antabli. Pistachios, cashews and freshly toasted pine nuts, almonds and walnuts give it a chunky texture, while onions and red bell peppers make it tangy-sweet.

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  • Total Time:
  • Servings: Makes 3 cups

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  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts
  • 1/4 cup sliced almonds
  • 1/2 cup walnuts
  • 1/4 cup unsalted roasted pistachios
  • 1/4 cup unsalted roasted cashews
  • 3 medium red bell peppers (1 pound), cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 medium sweet onion, coarsely chopped
  • 1/3 cup toasted bread crumbs
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • Salt
  • Cayenne pepper

How to make this recipe

  1. In a small skillet, heat the vegetable oil. Add the pine nuts and almonds and cook over moderately high heat, stirring, until lightly golden, about 2 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the nuts to a plate.

  2. Add the walnuts to the skillet and cook, stirring, until toasted, about 3 minutes. Transfer the walnuts to a food processor and let cool completely. Add the pistachios and cashews and pulse until the nuts are finely chopped. Scrape the finely chopped nuts into a medium bowl.

  3. Add the bell peppers and onion to the food processor and pulse until finely chopped. Transfer the pepper mixture to a fine-mesh sieve and press to extract as much liquid as possible. Add the mixture to the chopped nuts. Stir in the pine nuts, almonds, bread crumbs and olive oil. Season with salt and cayenne and serve.

Serve With

Warm pita.

Contributed By Photo © Lucy Schaeffer Published May 2009

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