If you are looking for a delicious way to spice up your chicken, look no further than harissa roasted chicken. Harissa is a North African spice paste made from roasted red peppers, garlic, and a variety of other spices that give it a unique and complex flavor. When paired with roasted chicken, harissa creates a savory, spicy dish that is sure to delight your taste buds.
The Origin of Harissa
Harissa originated in North Africa and is a staple in Tunisian, Algerian, and Moroccan cuisine. It is typically made with roasted red peppers, garlic, chili peppers, coriander, cumin, and caraway seeds, among other spices. The paste is used as a condiment or seasoning for a variety of dishes, including stews, soups, and grilled meats.
How to Make Harissa
Harissa can be made at home with just a few simple ingredients. To make harissa, you will need:
- 8-10 dried chili peppers
- 4 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 tsp coriander seeds
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 1 tsp caraway seeds
- 3 roasted red peppers
- 1 tbsp tomato paste
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
To make the harissa paste, soak the dried chili peppers in hot water for about 20 minutes until they are soft. Drain the peppers and remove the stems and seeds. In a skillet, toast the coriander, cumin, and caraway seeds until fragrant. In a food processor, combine the chili peppers, garlic, roasted red peppers, toasted spices, tomato paste, and olive oil. Puree until smooth and season with salt and pepper to taste.
Harissa Roasted Chicken Recipe
Now that you know how to make harissa, let’s dive into the recipe for harissa roasted chicken. This recipe is simple and easy to make, with just a few ingredients and minimal prep time.
- 1 whole chicken, about 4 pounds
- 2 tbsp harissa paste
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
- Rinse the chicken and pat it dry with paper towels.
- In a small bowl, mix together the harissa paste and olive oil.
- Rub the harissa mixture all over the chicken, making sure to coat it evenly.
- Season the chicken with salt and pepper to taste.
- Place the chicken in a roasting pan and roast for 1 hour and 30 minutes, or until the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F.
- Let the chicken rest for 10-15 minutes before carving.
Harissa roasted chicken can be served with a variety of sides, including roasted vegetables, rice, or couscous. The spicy flavor of the harissa pairs well with the sweetness of roasted carrots and the nuttiness of Israeli couscous.
Roasted Carrots Recipe:
- 1 lb carrots, peeled and sliced into 1-inch pieces
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- In a bowl, toss the sliced carrots with olive oil, cumin, salt, and pepper.
- Spread the carrots in a single layer on a baking sheet and roast for 20-25 minutes, or until tender and caramelized.
Israeli Couscous Recipe:
- 1 cup Israeli couscous
- 1 1/2 cups chicken broth
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- In a medium saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat.
- Add the Israeli couscous and sauté for 2-3 minutes until lightly toasted.
- Add the chicken broth and bring to a boil.
- Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 10-12 minutes, or until the couscous is tender and the liquid has been absorbed.
- Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Harissa Marinade Recipe:
- 1/4 cup harissa paste
- 2 tbsp honey
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- In a bowl, whisk together the harissa paste, olive oil, honey, lemon juice, cumin, salt, and pepper.
- Add the meat and marinate for at least 2 hours, or overnight.
- Grill or roast the meat until cooked to your desired level of doneness.
Harissa Roasted Vegetables Recipe:
- 1 lb mixed vegetables, such as carrots, bell peppers, and onions
- Cut the vegetables into bite-sized pieces.
- In a bowl, mix together the harissa paste, olive oil, salt, and pepper.
- Toss the vegetables with the harissa mixture until evenly coated.
- Spread the vegetables in a single layer on a baking sheet and roast for 25-30 minutes, or until tender and caramelized.
Health Benefits of Harissa
In addition to its delicious flavor, harissa also has a number of health benefits. The spicy peppers in harissa are rich in capsaicin, a compound that has been shown to boost metabolism and reduce inflammation. Harissa is also high in antioxidants, which can help protect against cancer and heart disease. The garlic in harissa has antibacterial properties and can help boost the immune system.
Tips for Making the Perfect Harissa Roasted Chicken
While harissa roasted chicken is a simple dish, there are a few tips to keep in mind to ensure that it turns out perfectly every time.
- Use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature of the chicken. The chicken is done when the temperature reaches 165 degrees F.
- Let the chicken rest for 10-15 minutes before carving. This allows the juices to redistribute and results in a juicier, more flavorful chicken.
- For extra crispy skin, pat the chicken dry with paper towels before rubbing it with the harissa mixture.
- Use a roasting pan with a rack to allow air to circulate around the chicken and ensure even cooking.
FAQs for Harissa Roasted Chicken Recipe
What is harissa?
Harissa is a spicy and aromatic paste originating from North Africa. It’s made from roasted red peppers, chili peppers, garlic, spices, and olive oil. Harissa is often used as a condiment and is a popular flavor in recipes for marinades, sauces, and dips.
Can I substitute harissa with another ingredient?
If you’re unable to find harissa paste, you can substitute it with a mixture of roasted red pepper, cumin, chili powder, garlic, and olive oil. However, the flavor won’t be exactly the same. You can also use another type of chili paste, such as sambal oelek, for a similar flavor.
Is the chicken spicy if using harissa?
Yes, the chicken will have a kick of heat if you use harissa paste. However, the spice level can be adjusted by using less or more harissa in the recipe. If you’re sensitive to spice, consider reducing the amount of harissa or serving the chicken with a cool and refreshing side dish.
Can I use boneless chicken instead?
Yes, you can use boneless chicken instead of bone-in chicken for this recipe. Just keep in mind that boneless chicken tends to cook faster than bone-in, so adjust the cooking time accordingly to prevent overcooking.
How long does it take to roast a whole chicken?
The cooking time for a whole chicken depends on the size of the chicken. A 3-4 pound chicken will take about 1 1/2 hours to roast at 375°F. It’s important to use a meat thermometer to ensure the internal temperature of the chicken reaches 165°F to ensure it’s fully cooked.
Can I use harissa roasted chicken for meal prep?
Yes, harissa roasted chicken is a great choice for meal prep since it can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. Simply reheat the chicken in the microwave or oven when ready to eat. The cooked chicken can also be used in salads, wraps, or sandwiches for a quick and easy meal.