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Muhamara (Walnut Dip) Print
Written by Ghinwa Alameen   
Saturday, 03 July 2010 09:57


A dip with a different taste, texture and flavor than your usual mezze spread. Walnut, red pepper, pomegranate molasses render a taste you will never forget.








  • 1 cup coarsely-ground walnut
  • 1 cup plain breadcrumbs
  • 1 big red pepper (use chili or sweet one)
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/8 cup chopped onion
  • 3 tablespoons pomegranate molasses
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt (or to taste)


  1. Quarter the red pepper, rub with little olive oil and roast in an oven for 20 minutes. You can use chili or sweet ones according to your taste. People usually prefer hot muhamara. You can also use red pepper paste if available in your Middle-eastern grocery store or just dried paprika if nothing else is available.
  2. In a food processor, grind the walnut. Set aside and grind the onion then add the red pepper and grind them together.
  3. In a bowl, add walnut, breadcrumbs, onion and red pepper and salt. mix well then add the other ingredients.
  4. Mix everything very well and set aside. The mixture will get thicker after some time. Store in the refrigerator until serving
  5. Serve garnished with walnuts halves and olive oil.

Makes 2-3 servings


Comments (12)
  • sam
    thanks for posting a recipe for this exquiste dish/spread from Haleb/Aleppo..almost always a touch of cumin is added right?
  • sam
    fresh squuezed lemon juice too rather than water??
  • Ghinwa
    I've never had Muhamara that contained any kind of spice. Where did you have it with cumin? Some Syrian dishes have many variations from one region to another, you know.

    You can add some lemon juice if you want it on the tangy side, but pomegranate gives a nice contradiction between sweet and sour, and of course the chiliness from the red pepper.
  • Aiida  - Ms.
    We always make it with spices . Maybe the armenian version in Haleb is spicy. We use the seven spice mix DAAH not just cumin.
  • Greg
    This is great, Ghinwa! Muhamara is one of my favorite mezze spreads and it is almost impossible to find in Middle Eastern restaurants or markets in the US. I will make this for my next get-together here in DC.
  • Ghinwa
    Greg, I agree. I haven't seen muhamara in the US either, but luckly all ingredients are available. Let me know if you want a certain recipe to remind you of the good days in Syria :)
  • V. Godfrey  - Watertown, MA
    You can find this in a number of Armenian grocery stores in Watertown and Belmont MA.
  • Ghinwa
    Thanks for the info. Armenian food is so good!
  • EDee Hussein  - EDee

    Syrian walnut dip is something I have not heard of. I'm going to make it for my Middle Eastern birthday party :) What do I serve with it for dipping?

    Thanks, EDee
  • Ghinwa  - Re:
    Hi EDee, muhamara is the thickest dip in the Syrian kitchen and has a dense flavor, so a little goes a long way (unlike hummus, for example). So for dipping, you should use something that can hold such thickness. In Syria, people just use bitefuls of Syrian bread, shape it like an ear and scoop some dip out. It's better as a spread, although you can use it as a dip. In the States, you could spread it on things like crostini, crackers, or dip with pita chips. It works great with grilled cheese sandwiches, too. Try it as a spread on bread and cover with slices of your favorite cheese. It is very versatile!
  • Sousou
    Hi Ghinwa
    In homs a similar dish is called 'ta'et maa'tet'. Its a strange name, but my mother makes it all the time. Is there much difference in taste?
  • Ghinwa  - Re: ta'et maatet
    Hi Sousou,
    Yes I know. I've always thought that ta'et maatet is the funniest name ever for a dish (it literally means 'she exploded and died', It's usually said of people who are teased/envious to death).
    So this is the exact same dish.
    Homsis are the funniest and the bravest people even in food naming!
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Last Updated on Monday, 11 October 2010 22:00
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