First posted: Feb 21, 2013

Harissa Chicken and Roasted Vegetable Salad


Harissa paste is a North African spice mix that’s traditionally made up of piri piri and other herbs and spices. I suppose you could say it’s North Africa’s answer to an Indian curry patse or a Thai red or green curry paste. Either way, I love it. It’s punchy and full of flavour and just a dollop can take any meal from drab to fab in a heartbeat. It wasn’t always that readily available in South Africa, but I am seeing it more and more on supermarket shelves, and believe me that’s a good thing. This salad is a really simple way to introduce yourself to it.



Cooks in:        Serves:2

  • 1 large or 2 small chicken breasts
  • 2 heaped tsp harissa paste (or moroccan spice paste)
  • 2 cups of mixed baby veg, cut in half: I used baby butternut, gem squash and patty pan
  • Fresh mint leaves, to serve
  • Lemon juice, to serve

What to do

1. Pre-heat your oven to the grill setting.

2. Microwave your baby veg on high for 5 minutes or until softened. Remove, place in an ovenproof dish, brush lightly with olive oil and grill for 8-10 minutes or until golden.

3. Whil the vegetables cook, coat the chicken in the harissa paste and fry on medium-high heat, turning half way, for 4 minutes on each side or until cooked through. Remove from the heat and cut into slices on the diagonal.

4. To serve, divide half the chicken and half the roasted vegetables into serving bowls, top with fresh mint leaves and a squeeze of lemon juice and eat immediately.

Optional extra
Serve this with spicy cous cous on the side, cooked according to packet instructions, with 1 extra tsp harissa paste mixed through the boiling water or stock when you cook it, as well as about 1 Tbsp each of chopped fresh mint and coriander.

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