I love it when one thing turns a dish from a little drab to totally fab. This is certainly the case with a sprinkling of dukkah. Dukkah is an aromatic seed and nut blend that originates from Egypt. The word 'dukkah' in Egyptian translates 'to pound', which is how you combine all of the spices and nuts in this mighty mix.
Dukkah is traditionally served as a snack with bread and olive oil, you dunk the bread in the oil, then in the dukkah which sticks onto the oil drenched bread. It's pretty damn delicious! It can also be sprinkled over roasted vegetables, meats, salads or over a dollop of natural yoghurt. My favourite way of easting it is to sprinkle it over a soft boiled egg for breakfast. It will certainly get your taste buds going in the morning!
The beauty of dukkah is you can be as creative as you want with it. You can use whatever nuts or spices you have and can tailor it to suit your taste buds. The pistachio recipe for this week is my particular favourite. The crushed pistachios give the dukkah a vibrant green colour, which looks really pretty when served. It's also gives the dukkah a lovely sweet flavour that offsets the remaining salty and highly aromatic ingredients.
This recipe will make approx. 2 cups of dukkah. I'm thinking this will make a great Christmas present!
1 cup pistachios
4 tbs sesame seeds
3 tsp coriander seeds
2 1/2 tsp dried mint
2 tsp fennel seeds
2 tsp cumin seeds
2 tsp cumin ground
1 1/2 tsp sea salt
HOW IT'S DONE
Heat a large frying pan on high heat, add the pistachios and toast for 5 minutes or until the pistachios are toasted and crisp. Make sure not to burn them. Once done remove and set aside to cool. Once cool, pound the pistachios in a mortar and pestle until the nuts turn into a sand like texture, with a few chunks of pistachio still remaining.
Add the sesame seeds to the fry pan and toast for 5 minutes, until golden and they begin to pop a little. Remove from the pan. Add all of the remaining spices and toast for 2 minutes, again being careful not to burn them.
Add the toasted spices and sea salt to the pounded pistachios and give them a gentle pond to combine. The dukkah will last for about 6 weeks as long as you store it in an air tight container. I promise it won't last that long, it's simply delicious!
Photography by Andy Stavert