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LifestyleColumnistsMarge Perry

3 Simple recipes to make using harissa

Meatballs made with lean ground beef and harissa

Meatballs made with lean ground beef and harissa sauce are simmered in tomatoes seasoned with cinnamon, cumin and smoked paprika. Photo Credit: Marge Perry

MOROCCAN MEATBALLS

1 1⁄4 pounds lean ground beef

2 tablespoons harissa

3⁄4 teaspoon salt, divided

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 medium onion, chopped (about 1 cup)

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1⁄2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon smoked paprika

1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes

2 tablespoons fresh mint, chopped

3 tablespoons cilantro, chopped

 

1. Combine the ground beef, harissa and 1⁄2 teaspoon of the salt in a bowl; mix well and form into 21 to 23 meatballs the size of golf balls.

2. Heat the oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium high. Add the meatballs and brown, turning occasionally, for about 4 minutes. (The meatballs will not be cooked through). Transfer to a plate.

3. Add the onion, garlic, cumin, cinnamon, smoked paprika and remaining 1⁄4 teaspoon salt to the skillet and cook until the onion begins to soften, about 3 to 4 minutes. Add the tomatoes and bring to a boil. Immediately reduce to a simmer and add the meatballs back to the pan. Cover and simmer, turning once or twice, until the sauce is thickened and the meatballs cooked through, about 15 to 18 minutes. Just before serving, stir in the mint and cilantro. Makes 4 servings.

Nutritional analysis for each serving: 296 calories, 32 g protein, 10 g carbohydrates, 2 g fiber, 14 g fat, 5 g saturated fat, 794 mg sodium

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HARISSA ROAST CHICKEN BREASTS

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 tablespoon tomato paste

2 tablespoons harissa

2 tablespoons orange juice

1 teaspoon orange zest

1⁄2 teaspoon salt

2 pounds bone-in chicken breasts, cut in 4 even pieces

 

1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Coat a baking pan with cooking spray.

2. Combine the olive oil, tomato paste, harissa, orange juice, zest and salt in a small bowl. Spread the mixture evenly over the chicken. Place in the baking dish and cook in the center of the oven until the thickest part of the meat registers 160 degrees, about 35 minutes. Makes 4 servings.

Nutritional analysis for each serving: 273 calories, 35 g protein, 2 g carbohydrates, 0 g fiber, 13 g fat, 3 g saturated fat, 414 mg sodium

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HARISSA-YOGURT MARINATED PORK TENDERLOIN

1⁄2 cup nonfat Greek yogurt

1⁄4 cup harissa

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1⁄2 teaspoon salt

1⁄4 teaspoon black pepper

1 1⁄2 pounds pork tenderloin

 

1. Combine the yogurt, harissa, lemon juice, salt and pepper in a zip-top plastic bag. Add the tenderloin and roll it around to thoroughly coat it in the mixture. Allow to marinate at least 20 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 425 degrees. Coat a baking sheet pan with cooking spray.

3. Place the pork on the prepared pan and roast in the center of the oven until it reaches an internal temperature of 145 to 150 degrees. Transfer to a cutting board and let stand 5 minutes before slicing. Makes 4 servings.

Nutritional analysis for each serving: 248 calories, 39 g protein, 2 g carbohydrates, 0 fiber, 8 g fat, 3 g saturated fat, 444 mg sodium

TIP: Harissa is a spicy Moroccan red pepper sauce sold at many specialty food stores and some grocery stores. After opening, store it in the refrigerator for months.

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