Duqqa (or Dukkah) is a dish common to Egypt. Often described as a “dip”, this mixture of ground nuts and spices is not so much a paste or liquid as a dry mixture of nuts and spices. Made ever so slightly dewy from the release of essential oils during the toasting process, this versatile accompaniment is best sprinkled on, well, anything. We have tried it on everything from fruit to pasta to peanut butter sandwiches. If you wish to stick to tradition, however, plunk your pita into olive oil first, then dip into the duqqa.
Hazlenuts are the most commonly used nut for making duqqa, but it is equally good with other as well- try almonds or walnuts for a slightly different flavor. Duqqas can also be adjusted to taste, especially on the Scoville scale. Feel free to experiment!
1/2 cup hazlenuts (or other nut)
2 tablespoons sesame seeds
1 tablespoon cumin seeds
1 tablespoon coriander seeds
1 tablespoon black peppercorn
1 teaspoon dried mint
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
optional add ins: chickpeas or chickpea flour, dried chili, fennel, caraway, cloves, cinnamon, sumac
Toast nuts and seeds lightly in a dry pan. Do not burn. Transfer to spice grinder or mortar and pestle and grind until pieces are fairly uniform in size. Add mint, thyme, and salt and mix. Keep refrigerated, as the duqqa will last several weeks.