Peas, Potatoes and Yuerba Buena Harissa

October 29th, 2013 § 0 comments § permalink


Serves 4

An accidental combination of the best kind, this dish is inspired by Salatata Batata al Tunis (Tunisian Potato Salad), and uses some of the fresh and vibrant local ingredients that I found here in Ecuador;  baby potatoes, peas , spicy red chilies and yerba Buena.  The spice mixture is a little plainer in this harissa recipe, as I used what was easy to find here and it is just as vibrant and fits perfect with the potatoes and peas.  Serve it hot or cold and with a dollop of fresh yogurt to mild out the spicy harissa.


1 pound baby potatoes, halved
2 teaspoons salt
1 cup fresh shelling peas, shelled
2 tablespoons cilantro, chopped
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
Smoked Maldon Salt ( or regular salt)
Fresh Mint ( Yuerba Buena) Harissa ( recipe follows)


Place the baby potatoes and salt in large pot and cover with water, about 1 inch above the potatoes.  Bring to a boil and allow to gently boil for about 10 minutes or until soft but still tender and “aldente”.  ( Or when a fork poked in moves rather gently through them.)  Turn the heat off, add the peas and cover and let stand for another 7-10 minutes.  Strain the potatoes and peas and place in a medium mixing bowl.  Add the cilantro and the olive oil and toss together gently, until all of the potatoes are coated with the oil and cilantro.  Serve with a drizzle of fresh harrisa and a pinch of smoked salt.

Yuerba Buena Harissa

Makes 2 cups


1 red bell pepper, roasted, peeled and deseeded

3 (hot) red chilies, roasted, peeled and deseeded
2 teaspoons cumin seeds, toasted
1 teaspoon coriander seeds, toasted
2 teaspoons rainbow, black or pink peppercorns, toasted

2 teaspoons smoked paprika
3 garlic cloves
1 tablespoon lime zest
3 tablespoons lime juice
2 teaspoons salt
2  tablespoons olive oil
3  tablespoons fresh mint leaves


Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth and spices are broken apart and the sauce is silky.  Can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks.

Quick Herb Rolls

November 15th, 2011 § 0 comments § permalink


2 cups all-purpose flour
1 T baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 stick cold unsalted butter cut into cubes
¾ c -1 c buttermilk
¼ cup fresh herbs of choice, chopped fine


Preheat oven to 425°F and lightly grease a baking sheet. Into a large bowl mix together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add cubed butter and mix with hands or fork until the mixture resembles a course meal, add buttermilk and mix until combined. At this stage add your  fresh herbs or whatever other ingredients you wish. Transfer mixture to a lightly floured surface and knead a few times until a smooth dough is formed. Roll out dough to about a ½ inch thick and cut with cutters in whatever shape you want your rolls. Place on baking sheet, sprinkle with salt and herbs if you choose. Brush with melted butter. Bake for about 15-20 minutes or until golden brown in color.

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