Making Dukkah

Making Dukkah~ A Stack of Dishes

Have you heard of Dukkah? It’s relatively new to me, which is surprising since I feel like I sometimes have heard of it all. Dukkah is a spice and nut blend that can be sprinkled on top of just about anything. Also sometimes spelled Duqqa, this melange is of middle Eastern origin, namely Egypt, where you may purchase it on the streets of Cairo in paper cones.

The concept is a mix of nuts such as hazelnuts and blended with toasted seeds such as coriander, anise and herbs such as mint. There is no real master recipe, the versions are as varied as the maker- sort of like ice cream. One idea, many flavor combinations.  My combination consisted of hazelnuts, pine nuts, poppy seeds, anise, coriander and purple basil from my garden.

dukkah ~ A Stack of Dishes

I toasted the nuts and spices separately, then ground them separately. I left the hazelnuts with a little bit of texture, which is my preference, but most often Dukkah is of a unified consistency.

How to Enjoy Dukkah

Traditionally in Egypt dukkah is served alongside olive oil and bread. Either the dukkah and oil or mixed together, or the bread may be dipped in oil, then into the dukkah before eating. It’s a nosh. A simple, flavorful, great treat along with your tea or lunch. But I find dukkah to be much more versatile that that. I like mine sprinkled over yogurt, or to lace an otherwise plain green salad. Add it to your chicken salad, or enhance your grilled cheese with a smattering. Spinkle it over your morning eggs, or coat fish before roasting. Recently I used it in this Coconut Sweet Potato Soup recipe. I also tossed some into my latest scone recipe too. It was completely divine!

Worth the Effort?

To be honest, it took me a little time to make this batch. One must be careful when toasting nuts and spices. As you can see from my photo I got a little side tracked when toasting the pine nuts and they turned out a little dark. But there are several great reasons to make your own batch. 

The first reason is it’s a great way to use some of those spices sitting in your cupboard. They don’t last forever, so you might as well create something with them. The second thing is a few tablespoons of this and that makes quite a big batch, which leads me to the third thing. Bottled up, this makes an awesome hostess gift and a great stocking stuffer. Stash a few jars in your freezer for quick hand outs. Trust me, you’ll make lasting friends with this one.

Dukkah~ A Stack of Dishes

Like I said the recipe may vary. Here is the breakdown of my combination, along with some other suggestions:

3 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted

small handful hazel nuts, toasted

2 tablespoons coriander seeds

2 tablespoons poppy seeds

2 tablespoons anise seeds

small handful of dried purple basil


Using a spice blender, or by hand, or in a mortar and pestle, reduce the ingredients to a grainy powder and toss to thoroughly combine. Taste for balance. Anise, for instance, has a strong flavor and may out shine some of the subtler flavors. Store in an airtight container, preferably in the fridge. Mine presently lives on the counter as I find uses for it almost every day. (you know those avocado toasts everyone is going nuts over lately? Yup, a sprinkle of this goodness will make it shine!

Some other options:

sesame seeds

cumin seeds






black pepper

Savory Corn Waffles with Yogurt Cream and Arugula Salad

Savory Corn Waffles with Yogurt Cream ~ A Stack of DishesIt shouldn’t surprise you to know that I am thinking about food all the time. Aside from the obvious fact that I must nourish myself several times throughout the day, I am also always thinking about flavors, imagining textures and combinations. To be honest it can be maddening at times to the point of being overwhelming. When I look into my fridge or cupboards I don’t see work or “nothing to eat”, I see endless possibilities. Oh where to start?

I keep a fairly well stocked pantry. For this I sometimes get chided by my wife- until the other day when she decided to prepare dinner. As she pulled together her menu she said, “I might have to go to the store- do we have fresh cilantro?” “SURE! I said” “Well, what about coconut oil, I’m sure we don’t have that.” Uhh… well yes, in fact we do. Plenty in fact.

And this is how I like it. Tools in the toolshed. Brushes, paints and canvas for the artist/painter. This is my playground. I can make stuff. {rubbing hands together with delight}

Corn Waffle with yogurt Cream ~ A Stack of Dishes I’ve been playing around in my mind with the idea of a savory waffle. Something earthy and toothsome and not just a block of doughy something. I had a ball with this concept, and came up with several really fun ideas (maybe soon to follow), but ultimately decided to land on this one. This waffle is laced with shredded carrots, and red pepper flakes. I made the batter a bit wet so the waffle came out crispy, and not as bready. For tang and texture I topped it with yogurt cream that is laced with fine olive oil and topped with blue cheese. Finally for an acid balance and snap I topped it with a lightly dressed peppery arugula salad.

An added bonus is the waffle is gluten free. A decision I made by choice. I used some chickpea flour in the batter, which also gives it a little extra protein, but if you don’t have a pantry like mine, feel free to switch it out with regular ol’ all purpose flour. No harm there.

btw- I love my waffle iron. It’s a pretty basic version. It goes right onto the stovetop. No cord, no honkin’ thang that will hog your counter. This one is slim and sexy and always at the ready. If you need to you can purchase a waffle iron like mine HERE

Savory Corn Carrot Waffle ~ A Stack of Dishes

Savory Corn Carrot Waffles with Yogurt Cream
A crispy savory waffle with a bit of a bite, paired with creamy tangy yogurt, blue cheese and a light arugula salad.
614 calories
52 g
57 g
40 g
13 g
5 g
270 g
238 g
13 g
0 g
32 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
Amount Per Serving
Calories 614
Calories from Fat 352
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 40g
Saturated Fat 5g
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 6g
Monounsaturated Fat 26g
Cholesterol 57mg
Sodium 238mg
Total Carbohydrates 52g
Dietary Fiber 4g
Sugars 13g
Protein 13g
Vitamin A
Vitamin C
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
  1. 1 cup yellow corn meal
  2. 1/2 cup chickpea flour
  3. 1 teaspoon baking powder
  4. 1 cup shredded carrots
  5. 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  6. 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  7. 1 cup 2% milk
  8. 1 whole egg
  9. 1/2 cup nonfat greek yogurt, plain
  10. 2 teaspoons fruity olive oil
  11. 1 oz blue cheese, thinly sliced (or crumbled)
  12. 3 cups baby arugula leaves
  13. 1/2 cup grape tomatoes, sliced in half
  14. 1 tablespoons olive oil
  15. 2 tablespoons sherry vinegar
  16. salt and pepper to taste
  1. In a large bowl combine the cornmeal, flour, baking powder, salt, pepper flakes and carrots. Toss to combine.
  2. In a separate small bowl combine the oil, milk and egg.
  3. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and stir smooth. The batter will be fairly wet. Let it rest while you prepare the waffle iron.
  4. When the iron is hot, pour half the batter over the iron and cook until the edges are a deep golden brown to almost too dark. You want the waffles crispy and crunchy on the outside with just a little tenderness inside. Repeat with the second half of the batter.
  5. While the waffles are cooking, in a small bowl combine the yogurt with a pinch of salt and some pepper. Stir until nice and smooth.
  6. In a separate bowl add the arugula and tomatoes. Drizzle the olive oil and vinegar over and toss to coat. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  7. To serve place two waffles per plate and top with the yogurt sauce. Drizzle a little fruity olive oil over the yogurt. Then top that with the arugula salad and blue cheese.
  8. * alternatively you may add the blue cheese into the yogurt and stir that smooth, or use a blue cheese dressing. It's all good.
A Stack of Dishes

Red Curry Chicken with Gingered Black Rice

Red Curry Chicken with Gingered Black Rice ~A Stack of Dishes

For those of you keeping track you might have thought I fell off the face of the earth. In many ways I have, but for good reasons.

Much of my time lately has been devoted to developing A Healthy Hunger. The work on the new business has been engrossing with little financial compensation, but the soul satisfaction is beyond measure. It means so much to me to help people to learn to love food, love to cook, and eat for a better, healthier life.

Red Curry Chicken with Gingered Black Rice ~A Stack of Dishes

Since launching the business about 6 months ago, the tribe of members is steadily expanding. Recently I started getting my first feedback from those following my menus. Dr’s reports and blood tests have come back greatly improved! Cholesterol down! Blood Sugars more stable!

Yes. It works. Eating well will impact you positively.

The other feedback is that cooking is not so terrible, and though some of the recipes are made with unfamiliar ingredients (tempeh? quinoa?), it’s all easy to prepare and delicious. Eating well is enjoyable. Doable. And beneficial.

Needless to say I cannot begin to tell you how tickled I am. Seriously- over the moon and beyond! This was the plan. To demystify good food and good food preparation.

In a few weeks I will be launching on A Healthy Hunger a 3 day challenge for Clean Eating. I know it’s hard during the summer, with so much socializing, to eat healthily- so what about focusing on excellent eating for 3 days of the week? Sounds doable right?

I’ll provide you with recipes for breakfast, lunch and dinner that your tastebuds will love and your body will appreciate. Think about it. Get your brain around it. You can do this, we’ll do it together. No charge, my whole hearted gift to you.

You’re going to love it, and love the way you feel.

Red Curry Chicken~A Stack of Dishes

In order not to miss this free challenge, head on over to A Healthy Hunger and sign up for the mailing list. You’ll get the news in your mailbox the moment it hits the airwaves.

I’m excited about this- I’m looking forward to you joining me.

Today I made you a delicious (AND healthy) grilled chicken that is marinated in yogurt and red curry paste. This lends a zing and a tang to the grilled chicken like no other. It’s not spicy, just zingy. The rice is chewy black rice that is scented with ginger, cilantro and scallions. It’s the kind of fragrant pilaf you would be happy doing a face plant into. It completely rocks the house.

Thanks for your patience all. I’ll try and be around more often. My heart is always there.

You can find red curry paste in the Asian, or Thai, section of your market, or you may purchase Red Curry Paste here. I use the Mae Ploy brand prefer it. You may also purchase the Black Rice here. Black rice is high in antioxidants and has a chew texture that is really wonderful. If you cannot get your hands on any, please substitute with brown rice or another grain of your choice.


**And don’t forget to join the mailing list at A Healthy Hunger for your FREE Clean Eating 3 day challenge**

Red Curry Chicken with Gingered Black Rice
650 calories
84 g
52 g
21 g
30 g
3 g
279 g
1088 g
7 g
0 g
16 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
Amount Per Serving
Calories 650
Calories from Fat 186
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 21g
Saturated Fat 3g
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 8g
Monounsaturated Fat 8g
Cholesterol 52mg
Sodium 1088mg
Total Carbohydrates 84g
Dietary Fiber 2g
Sugars 7g
Protein 30g
Vitamin A
Vitamin C
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
  1. 2 tablespoons red curry paste, + 1 teaspoon
  2. 1 cup non fat plain yogurt
  3. 1 lb chicken tenders, tendon removed and pounded evenly
  4. 1.5 cup black rice (also known as forbidden rice)
  5. 1 tablespoons minced ginger
  6. 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
  7. 2 scallions, sliced
  8. 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  9. 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  10. 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
  1. In a medium non reactive bowl, stir the curry paste and yogurt together. Add the chicken and toss to evenly coat with the marinade. Set aside for 15 minutes.
  2. In a medium saucepan combine the rice with 3 cups of water and a generous pinch of salt. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer, cover and cook until the water is absorbed and the rice is tender. About 20 minutes.
  3. Make the side sauce. In a small bowl combine the lime juice, teaspoon of curry paste, sugar and sesame oil and stir to thoroughly combine. Set aside.
  4. After the rice has been cooking for 15 minutes, warm a stove top grill over medium high heat and prepare with cooking spray. When the pan is hot, remove the chicken from the marinade, roughly scraping off the marinade, and grill for 3 minutes each side, or until cooked through.
  5. While the rice is still warm, add the ginger and cilantro and stir. Season with salt to taste.
  6. Right before serving add the scallions to the rice and top with the chicken.
  7. Drizzle the sauce over the chicken and serve.
Adapted from Inspired by Donna Hay
Adapted from Inspired by Donna Hay
A Stack of Dishes