Carrot Salad With Harissa & Lemon

This cooked salad is one of many salads my mother makes every Friday for dinner, Shabbat‘s meal. We call them salads though they are actually mezzes. After matbucha, a cooked tomato and pepper jam-like dip, this salad is my favorite.

It doesn’t require much effort, many ingredients, or time, but the carrots must be cooked perfectly – tender but still with a bite. You must baby-sit the carrots while steaming them. We’re talking 4 – 6 minutes, depending on the size of your carrots. Hard is better than soft. It wouldn’t be the end of the world if you overcooked them. If you did overcook the carrots – because you were scrolling on Instagram – mush them and serve it as a dip.

You can make the harissa yourself or buy it online or at Middle-Eastern stores. My harissa isn’t as spicy as most store-bought harissa. Before you add it to the salad taste it to make sure it’s not too hot for you.

Carrot Salad With Harissa & Lemon

Moroccan style cooked salad to serve as a mezze, side or in an omelet sandwich.
Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time10 minutes
Course: Appetizer, Mezze, Salad
Cuisine: Moroccan
Diet: Vegan
Keyword: Gluten-Free, Plant-Based
Servings: 4 as mezze
Author: Shelly
Cost: $3


  • 10 medium carrots
  • ¼ cup parsley, chopped finely
  • 1 tablespoon harissa or make the dressing below - check how spicy it is before adding it
  • 3 garlic cloves, crushed
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • 2 tablespoons harissa (or 1 teaspoon sweet paprika and ½ teaspoon hot paprika infused in 2 tablespoons canola or olive oil)
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • salt


  • Peel the carrots and slice them 1.5in (2cm) thick; Put them in a saucepan with salted water and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer until almost tender, about 10 minutes. Drain with a colander and leave to dry out completely.
  • If you don't have harissa, mix all the dressing ingredients in a small mixing bowl.
  • Put the carrots in a bowl with the parsley and harissa or dressing, and toss. Taste and correct seasoning. Serve or store in a container in the fridge up to five days.


The harissa is the key for this salad but if you don't have any you can make a dressing that works well too. You can also make your own harissa,  it's very easy. 
This salad tastes better when it's in room temperature. 

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