Muhammara Veggie Wrap ~ A rainbow chard roll stuffed with a heavy spread of Muhammara, roasted cauliflower and quinoa tahini salad and layered with cabbage and microgreens.
***This post is written in collaboration with California Walnuts. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
This easy-to-make spring recipe also works well into the summer. In fact, it’s a staple for lunch at the park and since it’s plant-based, I can worry less about food spoilage and more about spending time with the kids.
For us, spring and summer means long days outside with meals that look like this: tasty and nutrient packed. Admittedly, my kids will often rotate the Swiss chard for a tortilla to roll up their veggie wraps and I will fill it with what we have on hand. What doesn’t ever change is the Muhammara spread. It’s a must for these rolls. All the heavy lifting in terms of flavor lies in the spread.
To make things even better, walnuts play a big part in the Muhammara Veggie Wrap recipe and a plant-forward diet. A plant-forward diet is not about excluding or limiting food groups; it’s about being more mindful of how to add and enjoy more plants on the plate. Plant forward eating is a style of eating that prioritizes plants – including nuts like walnuts – without excluding other foods groups. Walnuts are also a plant, too!
Walnuts add flavor and it’s a win-win since they are a simple but powerful ingredient that can enhance any meal or snack. They contain more omega-3 alpha linolenic acid (ALA) than any other tree nut (2.5g/oz ALA). Omega-3 ALA has been associated with benefits for heart health, brain health and inflammation! Additionally, walnuts are a powerhouse of nutrients, with 4g of protein, 2g of fiber and 45g of magnesium per ounce.
Now that you know walnuts are key to this recipe and plant-forward eating, make sure that you keep them properly stored so your recipe has the freshest and most flavorful walnuts to work with. The proper way to store walnuts for short term use is in the refrigerator; for long term use (a month or longer), store walnuts in the freezer. Grab enough walnuts to make this and save some for this one here the Warm Bean and Walnut Pesto Dip here and for the Walnut Dukkah Chicken here.
Finally, since Muhammara is the center of this recipe, below is a mini-primer if you are not familiar with this dip.
What is Muhammara?
Pronounced muh-huh-maa–ruh, Muhammara is a Middle Eastern dip that originated in the city of Aleppo in Syria.
What ingredients are in Muhammara?
The principal ingredients in Muhammara are roasted red bell peppers, walnuts, pomegranate molasses, breadcrumbs, olive oil, garlic, lemon juice, along with a handful of spices.
What do you need make Muhammara?
The tools generally used to make Muhammara is a food processor or a mortar and pestle. The food processor will give you a smoother finish while the mortar pestle will generally yield a chunkier consistency. Of course you can control the consistency for both based on how much you work it and what you prefer. For my personal taste, I prefer the ease of a food processor and the smoother finish.
How can be Muhammara be used?
Muhammara versatility lends itself well as a dip for things like veggies, toasted pita, on a crudité platter or any shared table setting. Use it as a spread in sandwiches or wraps like you see here. It is also traditionally used as a sauce for kebabs, grilled meats and fish.
- 1 cup of Muhammara (recipe follows)
- 2 bunches of rainbow chard
- 2 cups roasted cauliflower, chopped
- 1 cup cooked quinoa
- 6 tablespoons tahini
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 ½ tablespoons lemon juice, freshly squeezed
- ½ teaspoon toasted sesame oil
- 1 small garlic, grated
- 1 cup thinly sliced red cabbage
- 1 cup microgreens (any variety will work)
Instructions – Veggie Wrap
1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Trim the large thick stalks at the end of the rainbow chard leaves. Blanch the leaves, about 10-15 seconds (this makes them more pliable). Remove from water and pat dry. Set aside to cool for about 5 to 7 minutes.
2. In the meantime, toss together cauliflower, quinoa, tahini, olive oil, lemon juice toasted sesame oil and garlic. Set aside.
3. Place blanched leaf down and spread about 1to 2 tablespoons of Muhammara on top. Layer with cauliflower mixture, red cabbage and microgreens. Roll up like a burrito. Slice in half on the bias and serve.
Muhammara Dip Recipe
Makes about 2 cups
4 red bell peppers, halved
4 garlic cloves
3/4 cup (75 g) walnuts
3/4 cup (75 g) breadcrumbs
4 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons pomegranate molasses
1/2 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon Aleppo pepper (or red pepper flakes)
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon coriander
1 teaspoon fine sea salt
Instructions - Muhammara
1. Heat oven to 350 degrees F.
2. Place each halved red bell pepper skin side up on a baking sheet. Roast for 30-35 minutes or until skin is charred and blackened. Remove from oven and transfer peppers to a bowl, cover with plastic wrap for about 20 minutes. When the peppers are cooled enough to handle remove and discard the skin and seeds.
3. In a food processor bowl, add the walnuts and bread crumb, process to a fine crumb. Add the roasted red peppers, garlic, olive oil, pomegranate molasses, lemon juice, Aleppo pepper, cumin and coriander process to a smooth texture.