1. A pungent paste or sauce made with chilies, garlic, cumin, caraway, coriander, paprika, and olive oil, used as a condiment and flavoring in North African and Middle Eastern cookery
|From eCurry - there's a recipe too!|
Although the word harissa didn't make it to English until the last century, harisa has been around since at least medieval times. Originally it was a porridge-like dish made of ground wheat and tenderized meat pounded together. It was eaten by many Arabic-speaking peoples including those in Muslim Spain. It was also eaten as a Sabbath dish by Jews in Spain in the 13th century.