Hmiss, a simple and delicious salad of grilled peppers. Fit for your iftar table this Ramadan!
Or you know, this is an ideal side dish to cook and serve at a summer barbecue.
Hmiss goes by different names and spelling variations such as slata/slatha/salata/chleta mechouia “grilled salad” and taktouka, depending on which country and province of the Maghreb you are in.
Not only the name, the ingredients and method of cooking vary slightly too.
Some add tomato as I do, others go further and add garlic, garnish with tuna and/or sliced boiled egg etc.
All contain peppers so essentially it’s a grilled pepper salad which sounds and is simple, at least the way I make it.
Hmiss is smoky, savoury, mildly hot -tongue tingling (depending on the strength of your hot pepper!) and sweet. Those flavours will have you going back for more.
Some recipes require double cooking the peppers. First grilling, then again in a pan with tomato and olive oil. My recipe is quicker, requiring only the grilling of the peppers and tomato.
Grill the peppers and tomato on a tabouna – a type of brazier used in Algeria. You can easily replace this and use a barbecue, an oven grill/broiler or a gas stove as I did, instead. You want the skins to be charred all over, make sure you turn the peppers and tomato often.
Allow the peppers and tomato to cool, this makes it a lot easier to remove the charred skins.
Once you’ve removed the skins from the peppers and tomato, remove tops and most of the seeds. This is for aesthetics mostly, except in the case of the hot pepper “felfel haar”.
Chop the peppers and tomato as finely as you can. Mix together and chop again
Finally, plate up: add salt, olive oil to taste and mix to incorporate.
Best eaten with some crusty baguette or khobz eddar.