Moroccan-Style Spicy Carrot Dip Recipe

J. Kenji Lopez-Alt

Spicy, pungent harissa and briny olives balance the sweetness of puréed glazed carrots.

Note: Harissa is a Tunisian spice pasted made from piri-piri peppers. It can be found in cans or bottles in most major supermarkets or specialty grocers.

Recipe Facts

Active: 10 mins
Total: 25 mins
Serves: 12 to 16 servings

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  • 2 pounds carrots, peeled and cut into rough chunks
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 2 medium cloves garlic, minced (about 2 teaspoons)
  • 1 (1-inch) knob ginger, grated on the medium holes of a box grater
  • 2 tablespoons capers, drained
  • 1/4 cup pitted green olives, roughly chopped
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley or cilantro leaves
  • 2 tablespoons harissa, or more to taste (see note)
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 recipe grilled naan or store-bought flatbread heated on grill or in a dry skillet


  1. Place carrots in a large saucepan and cover with water by 1/2 an inch. Add sugar and 1 teaspoon salt. Bring to a boil over high heat and cook, stirring occasionally, until carrots are tender, liquid has evaporated, about 15 minutes. Continue to cook, stirring constantly, until sugar is a golden blond caramel color, about 5 minutes longer. Remove from heat and immediately add half a cup of water. Transfer carrots and caramel to the bowl of a food processor.

  2. Add cumin, coriander, garlic, ginger, capers, olives, parsley (or cilantro), and harissa. Pulse until the carrots are roughly chopped, 6 to 8 one-second pulses, scraping down the sides of the processor as necessary. With processor running, drizzle in most of olive oil, saving a couple tablespoons for garnish. Season to taste with more salt.

  3. Transfer to a serving bowl, drizzle with remaining olive oil, and serve with warm flatbrad.

Special equipment

food processor

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