Our new love of North African flavors has led us to discover a unique blend of spices and ingredients. This Spicy Green Sauce from City Kitchen,called chermoula offers just that. A slightly spicy pesto-like sauce that infuses the heat of serrano peppers, with the very bright and green flavors of lots of fresh cilantro and scallions, and finishes with a hint of tart lemon zest. We paired this sauce initially with our North African Chicken, but are certain it would be delicious with fish, beef, or lamb.
Spicy Green Sauce
- 1 preserved lemon available at Middle Eastern groceries or the grated zest of 1 lemon
- Salt to taste
- 1 garlic clove smashed with a little salt to form a paste
- 1 or 2 serrano or jalapeño chiles very finely chopped (use less for a milder sauce)
- 1 cup finely chopped cilantro leaves and tender stems
- 1/3 cup olive oil more to taste
- 3 scallions finely chopped.
- Remove preserved lemon from its brine and rinse well in cold water. Chop the peel into approximately 1/16-inch cubes (reserve pulp for another purpose). Rinse the cubes, drain and reserve.
- In a small bowl, mix the garlic paste, chiles and cilantro. (Grind these in a blender or food processor if you wish, but it is nice to have some of the cilantro hand-chopped.)
- Stir in the olive oil, scallions and diced lemon peel or zest. Taste and add a small amount of salt or more oil if necessary. The sauce tastes best freshly made.