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Tunisian Chickpeas


So, this little guy has been hariss harassing me for years. Not lying.


You see, way back in the day, I can’t remember the details, maybe it was my birthday? Maybe it was that time I went to Montana to take care of my brother for a week? I can’t remember. Anyway, my mommy got me this fantastic basket full of different foodie items and this little can was in there.

And that was 3-4 years ago.

And I’ve moved 3-4 times since then.

And that little can has come with me every single time.


I was too scared to use it. I didn’t know what it was or what I was supposed to do with it.

But now it had become a challenge.

Every time I opened the pantry, it taunted me.

Well, little can of spicy paste, your day has come.

Tunisian Chickpeas


    2 Tbls olive oil
    2 cloves garlic, minced
    4 Tbls harissa paste (you may want to do this to taste!)
    2 15-ounce cans of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
    1 15-ounce can of lite coconut milk, shaken very well
    2 roma tomatoes, diced
    1/4 cup chopped cilantro
    3 cups prepared basmati rice


In a large pot, heat oil over medium heat. Add garlic and harissa and stir well. Stir in chickpeas and coconut milk. Bring to a boil then simmer 10 minutes. Stir in tomato and cilantro just before serving.

Serve over rice.
Serving Size: 1 1/2 cup chickpeas with 3/4 cup rice
Nutrition (with rice)


I’m almost embarrassed by how ridiculously easy this recipe was but how amazing it turned out.

But a word of warning! The husband started hiccupping seconds after his first bite.

Yep, it is that spicy.  


Now. What do I do with the other half of the can of super spicy pepper paste?

12 Responses

  1. I borrowed this recipe from Smitten Kitchen and it is great, so try this:

    Carrot Salad with Harissa, Feta and Mint

    3/4 pound carrots, peeled, trimmed and coarsely grated
    4 TBS olive oil
    1 crushed clove of garlic
    1/2 tsp caraway seeds or about half as much, ground
    3/4 tsp cumin seeds or about half as much, ground
    1/2 teaspoon paprika
    3/4 teaspoon harissa (for a solid kick of heat; adjust yours to taste, and to the heat level of your harissa)
    1/2 tsp sugar
    3 TBS lemon juice
    2 TBS flat leaf parsley, finely chopped
    2 TBS fresh mint, finely chopped
    1 C feta, crumbled

    In a small sauté pan, cook the garlic, caraway, cumin, paprika, harissa and sugar in the oil until fragrant, about one to two minutes. Remove from heat and add the lemon juice and a pinch of salt.

    Pour over the carrots and mix. Add the herbs and mix. Leave to infuse for an hour and add the feta before serving.

    • Thanks, Monica! (Wow, you are like a local celebrity to me! Adore your macaroons!) I’ll have to give this a try! Maybe with zucchini instead of carrots since I can’t have carrots.

  2. Yum, that sounds so good! I’ve never bought harissa but I’ll have to look out for it- I loooove spicy food.

  3. Hooray, I’m glad you used it. Of course try it in your next cous cous dish. I think it would be great in a stew. What ever you would use Siracha you can use harissa.

  4. I love harissa and chickpeas. This recipe sounds delicious!

  5. Sounds like a great dish, but I’ve never heard of harissa – should I go looking at a Middle Eastern grocer?

    • I’m not exactly sure since I didn’t buy it. I think I’ve seen it at World Market and Whole Foods but I’m certain a Middle Eastern/African grocer would sell it. You can get it in paste form and I believe also as dry spice.

  6. that looks SO good. I’d never heard of harissa before, but this middle eastern dish looks like it might be a new fave!

  7. I’ve never used harissa but you’ve made me want to, and badly. That dish looks very, very delicious. I love most anything that uses rice to sop it up and has piles of flavor. Thanks for sharing this.

  8. Haha I’ve been wanting to use Harrissa too but Im at a lost on what to do with it as well. This dish looks super yummy!

  9. Looks fabulous! i love the look of the dish paired with the rice, very filling and full of flavour! yum!

  10. Looks fantastic! I’ve never used Harrissa before. Maybe now I’ll work up the courage

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