Whenever I make this Syrian dip, muhamarra, people seem surprised it’s not the usual hummus. I love its appetizing deep brick color and the hint of smokiness from the peppers and paprika, which seems especially nice at this time of year.

Pomegranate molasses is a Middle Eastern condiment available in specialty food stores and some supermarkets. It’s a syrupy reduction of pure pomegranate juice. If you are unable to find pomegranate molasses, simmer pomegranate juice in a saucepan until it reduces to a syrup-consistency.

Pomegranate Red Pepper Dip
By Karen
Makes about 1 cup

Ingredients:

¼ cup walnuts, toasted
2 red bell peppers, roasted and peeled
1 clove garlic
2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon pomegranate molasses
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon smoked paprika

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Spread walnuts on baking sheet and bake 8-10 minutes to toast.

Pulse walnuts in a food processor until finely ground. Add the remaining ingredients and process until very smooth, scraping down the container once or twice if necessary. Taste the mixture for seasoning and add more salt, lemon juice or molasses to balance the flavor, if needed.

Serve with raw vegetables such as sweet bell pepper, cucumbers and carrots and toasted pita triangles.

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