Dukkah Spice Mix

This mix of Vanns spices, nuts, and seeds, toasted and coarsely ground, can add flavor and sophistication to a variety of savory dishes.

Dukkah Spice Mix

"Dukkah" is a term that can technically be used to decribe any mix of nuts, seeds, and spices that has been coarsely ground in a mortar and pestle -- this version uses hazelnuts for a toasty, nutty flavor, as well as a mix of savory, peppery, earthy Vanns spices to create a condiment that can be sprinkled over just about anything that could benefit from an infusion of Middle Eastern-ish flavor.

Sprinkle it over your homemade hummus to wow at a potluck, over a simple salad as a more flavorful substitute for the crunch of a crouton, over roasted vegetables, chicken cutlets, poached eggs -- the only limit is your imagination! Once you have this dukkah in your pantry, you'll want it to become one of your staples.

Spices used in this recipe

Sesame Seeds, White
Coriander, Seeds Whole
Peppercorns, White
Paprika, Hungarian Sweet
Paprika, Spanish Sweet
Salt, English Flake Sea
Cumin Seed



A note: If you don’t have a mortar and pestle, you can use a food processor or spice grinder to make this mix - just be careful not to over-process the hazelnuts and turn them into nut butter!

  1. Place hazelnuts in a dry frying pan or skillet over medium heat and toast, shaking occasionally, until fragrant and starting to brown slightly. Keep a careful eye on them, as they’ll burn easily. Remove to a bowl or plate and allow to cool slightly. Crush in a mortar and pestle until coarsely but fairly evenly ground and transfer to a medium bowl.
  2. Place the sesame seeds in the pan over medium heat and toast until starting to turn golden. Remove to the mortar and pestle. Toast the sunflower seeds in the same manner and add to the mortar and pestle. Crush the sunflower and sesame seeds together, again until coarsely ground. Add to the bowl with the hazelnuts.
  3. Toast the coriander seeds until fragrant, and add to the mortar, then do the same with the white peppercorns, and then the cumin seeds. It’s important to toast the seeds separately, as they are different sizes and cook at different rates. Crush the coriander, white peppercorns, and cumin seeds to a rough cornmeal consistency, and stir into the bowl with the rest of the ingredients. Add the paprika and flaky salt and stir to combine. Allow to completely cool to room temperature. Store in an airtight container for up to three months, or in the freezer for up to six months, though we suspect it won’t last that long!

Makes about 1 cup. Adapted from Diana Henry.

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