Green-Top Harissa

Levon Wallace

21C Hotels & Museum

A fiery North African condiment gets a waste-reducing revamp in this rendition from Levon Wallace. He supplements the traditional dried spice blend with root vegetable tops and herb stems, turning the typically ruby-hued spread a vibrant green. Use it to marinate chicken, spread on turkey burgers or grilled fish, or mix with Greek yogurt for an unexpected, flavorful dipping sauce.


  • 2 tablespoons cumin seeds
  • 1 tablespoon coriander seeds
  • 3 cups packed radish tops (or turnip tops, beet tops, etc.)
  • 1/2 cup cilantro stems, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup parsley stems, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 6 to 8 scallion bottoms (the white and light green portion), sliced
  • 2 jalapeño peppers, seeded and sliced
  • 1 clove garlic, smashed
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt


Toast the cumin and coriander seeds in a small, dry skillet over medium-low heat, tossing constantly until very fragrant, about 3 minutes.

Place all ingredients in a food processor or blender, and process until smooth. Transfer the harissa to a nonreactive container with plastic wrap or parchment paper on the surface (this will keep the harissa from browning).

Note: The harissa can be made ahead and refrigerated for up to 4 days.


From Waste Not: How to Get the Most from Your Food by The James Beard Foundation/Rizzoli Publishing.


2 cups