Tunisian Hot Vegetable Dip (Slata Mechouia)

New Mexico Chiles are the dried form of the Red Anaheim Pepper. This chile has a thin flesh with an earthy chile flavor and undertones of wild cherries. This chile ranges from 2 – 4 on a heat scale of 1 to 10. The New Mexico Chile may be referred to as the California Chile or Chile Colorado. New Mexico Chiles are commonly used in Red Mexican or Southwestern sauces and is grown in Mexico. This mildly hot chile. Scoville heat units 8,000 – 12,000.

Suggested Use:
New Mexico Chiles are mildly hot and very popular in Southwest cooking. Great in sauces, salsa, rice dishes, stews and soups. Add directly to the cooking liquid along with other spices. Use in stir fry, or add to chicken or fish marinades.

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1 red or yellow bell pepper, cut in half, seeds removed
2 medium tomatoes
1 small onion, cut in half
4 green New Mexico or poblano chiles
3 whole cloves garlic
2-3 Tbsp. olive oil
2 tsp. lemon juice, fresh preferred
1 Tbsp. caraway seeds or 1 Tbsp. cumin seeds
1 Tbsp.chopped brine cured black olives
chopped parsley for garnish
1 small loaf French bread


Place the bell pepper, tomatoes, onion, chiles and garlic on a medium-hot grill and grill until the skins become charred and blistered. The onions will take longer to cook than the rest of the vegetables. Remove the vegetables from the grill, place them in a bowl and cover with a damp cloth to loosen the skins. Remove the skins, but don’t worry–a few charred pieces will add an interesting flavor dimension. Mash the vegetables together and place the mixture in a bowl.

Mix the remaining ingredients, except for the bread, and pour over the vegetables and gently toss. Transfer to a serving bowl.

Serve the dip with the bread and encourage guests to tear the bread into chunks and dip in mixture.

Yields about 2 cups.

Recipe by Dave DeWitt and Nancy Gerlach.