Ever heard of Dukkah? It’s a nut and herb mixture that can be enjoyed as a flavor enhancer, condiment or dip.
It’s popular in African, Middle Eastern and Australian cuisines, but what is the best way to use it?
If you need a substitute for Dukkah for whatever reasons like unavailability of ingredients or allergies, there are several options available.
Read on to know all about how you can use Dukkah and the five best substitutes for it.
What is Dukkah?
Dukkah (or duqqa) is a Middle Eastern condiment made up of mixed nuts, spices, herbs and sometimes seeds.
Originating in Egypt, it has become popular all around the world.
It can be used to add flavor, texture and color to a wide variety of dishes.
The exact ingredients used in a dukkah mix vary depending on the region and personal preference, but common ingredients typically include hazelnuts, sesame seeds, coriander and cumin seeds.
These are all combined in powdered form to make a dry mix that can be sprinkled on food or mixed with oil or honey to make a dip.
Dukkah is easy to use and an excellent way to enhance the flavor of both savory and sweet dishes.
Some popular ways of using it include sprinkling it over salads or roasted vegetables; topping hummus; mixing into rice; coating meats or fish before cooking; using as part of brunch dishes like avocado toast and omelets, as well as mixed into bread dough for added crunchiness; stirring into soups for extra dimension; making bites with cheeses like feta cheese wrapped in phyllo pastry with dukkah sprinkled inside — the possibilities are endless.
The 5 BEST Substitutes for Dukkah
Ground up and served with oil-dipped bread, it is a crunchy and aromatic way to add flavor to any dish.
Due to its unique flavor profile, finding substitutes for Dukkah can be a challenge, but here are five ingredients that can make worthy replacements.
1 – Tsire
Tsire is a combination of four ingredients — chili powder, cumin, salt and pepper.
This combination of spices creates a salty, slightly spicy and complex flavor profile for your dishes and it is often used as a dip for bread or vegetables.
While Tsire does not have the nutty crunch that Dukkah has, it still provides you with an authentic Mediterranean flavor that is similar to Dukkah.
To prepare Tsire as a dip, add 2 tablespoons of olive oil to the dry mix.
Tsire can also be used as a seasoning on meats or fish — just sprinkle the dry mix over roasted vegetables or grilled meats for an extra kick of flavor.
2 – Za’atar
Za’atar is a popular Middle Eastern blend of herbs and spices.
This mix usually consists of thyme, oregano, sesame seeds, sumac, salt, and marjoram.
Za’atar is used as a condiment or spread on flatbreads and other savory dishes.
It has an earthy, nutty flavor that’s similar to Dukkah.
You can use this mixture as a one-for-one replacement for Dukkah in recipes.
Keep in mind that since some versions of Za’atar also contain sumac, this blend may have a slightly sour flavor that you won’t find in Dukkah.
3 – Furikake
Furikake is a traditional Japanese condiment but has become popular all over the world for its unique flavor and versatility.
It is made from a mix of dried and ground seaweeds, sesame seeds, salt, and sometimes other seasonings, like fish powder.
The mixture of ingredients makes it perfect for sprinkling on salads, tofu dishes, and many types of seafood.
Furikake isn’t as nutty or earthy as Dukkah but can provide a similar crunchy texture to dishes.
Choose between traditional furikake mixtures or some flavored with kelp extract, wasabi powder, soybeans, yakinori seaweed flakes or umeboshi paste.
The porosity of furikake also helps it to absorb the flavors of its surrounding ingredients quickly.
As such, it can really wake up vegetable dishes with umami seasoning without overwhelming natural flavors too much.
It’s also a tasty way to add some flair to pizza.
4 – Ras el Hanout
Ras el Hanout is a savory, aromatic spice mix originating from North Africa.
It’s made by infusing spices like nutmeg, cinnamon, cumin, paprika and ginger together with a variety of other spices to create an intensely flavorful blend.
Ras el Hanout is not as intense or as carb-heavy as Dukkah, but it can add similar subtle sweetness and depth to any dish.
It’s great for seasoning grilled meats, stews or sprinkling over couscous.
5 – Cajun Spice Blend
Cajun Spice Blend is a blend of herbs and spices commonly used in Cajun cooking, including, but not limited to garlic powder, onion powder, oregano, paprika, cumin and black pepper.
It brings the perfect combination of sweetness and heat to a dish.
For an added nutty crunch similar to that which dukkah offers, add some toasted sesame seeds.
Cajun Spice Blend makes an excellent substitute for dukkah when you’re looking for something that adds flavor as well as texture.
In conclusion, dukkah is a delicious and versatile Middle Eastern spice mix which can be used in a variety of dishes to add an interesting and unique flavor.
While it is not typically found in the average grocery store or home pantry, it is an excellent substitute for many flavorful condiments such as nuts, seeds, and herbs.
Additionally, with just a few simple ingredients you can easily make your own dukkah at home.
For those who cannot find or do not wish to make their own dukkah there are several great alternatives.
No matter what option you choose, experimenting with different combinations with herbs and spices can help you create a delicious dish that perfectly suits your taste buds.