Harissa is a North African spice paste, usually made with a base of chilli peppers, paprika, garlic and olive oil, plus variety of other spices which vary between regions. Its now widely available in UK supermarkets, and a fantastic way to add a splash of Moroccan mystique to your dinner in one easy dollop.
Roasting chickpeas is a new one on me, but they really are as good as everyone says! These would be fantastic as a snack or party nibble, but I particularly love this combination of the crunchy, spicy chickpeas with creamy sweet potato mash and charred aubergines.
Don’t be put off by the 50 minute cooking time – this is very simple to throw together and is all cooked on just two baking trays in the oven, so you’ll be spending the majority of that 50 minutes with your feet up, I promise.
Harissa Roasted Chickpeas and Aubergine with Sweet Potato Mash
- 2 large or 4 smaller sweet potatoes
- 400 g tin chickpeas, drained, rinsed and dried thoroughly
- 2 tbsp harissa (for fairly spicy chickpeas - use more or less to your own taste!)
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp tomato purée
- half an aubergine, sliced into rounds about half a centimetre thick
- 1 red onion, peeled and sliced thickly
- handful fresh parsley
- 1 lemon
- Preheat the oven to 200°C / 400°F / Gas Mark 6.
- Prick the sweet potatoes a few times with a sharp knife, and place them on a large baking tray in the oven. Set a timer to count down 45 minutes.
- In a large bowl, mix together the harissa, olive oil and tomato purée, then add in the rinsed and dried chickpeas and toss until thoroughly coated. Season with salt & black pepper. When the sweet potatoes have been in the oven for 10 minutes, add the chickpeas to the same baking tray and return to the oven. Don't wash up the bowl!
- Now place the aubergine and onion slices in the same bowl (with the leftover harissa and oil), and toss until evenly coated. Add a little more oil if you think they look very dry. Season well with salt and black pepper. Spread the slices evenly over a second baking tray.
- After the potatoes have been in the oven 20 minutes, move them to a lower oven shelf and place the aubergines on the top shelf for the last 20 minutes of cooking. Keep an eye on both trays to make sure nothing starts to burn, (though a little charring round the edges is delicious!).
- When the cooking time is up, check that the potatoes are cooked through by piercing with a sharp knife - they should be soft inside. If not, give them another 5-10 minutes.
- Remove everything from the oven. Split open the potato skins and scoop the flesh into the bowl, (doesn't matter if it still has a little harissa in it!). Mash with a fork and season with salt and pepper. Divide between two plates.
- Tip the chickpeas, onions and aubergines onto one baking tray, mix together then scatter with parsley and squeeze over the juice of the lemon. Toss to coat evenly, then divide between the plates and enjoy!
If you like Moroccan food, take a look at my Vegetarian Moroccan Pinterest Board for more inspiration:
Follow Kate Ford | The Veg Space’s board Moroccon Food: Vegetarian and Vegan on Pinterest.
I’m linking this recipe to the Meat Free Mondays challenge over at Jac’s lovely veggie blog Tinned Tomatoes – do hop over for a look!