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2 teaspoon cumin seeds
2 teaspoon coriander seeds
½ teaspoon cardamom seeds, dark inner seeds
4 teaspoon chili pequins, whole dried pods
10 whole cloves
½ teaspoon black peppercorns
½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon salt
2 large cloves garlic
¼ cup olive oil
Place cumin, coriander, cardamom, chili pequins, cloves and peppercorns in a small saucepan, set over moderately high heat, and toast spices 3 to 4 minutes, shaking pan frequently.
cumin seeds will turn bitter if browned. Cool spices 2 to 3 minutes, transfer to a mortar, and crush thouroughly with a pestle. Add cayenne, salt and garlic and crush all to paste. Transfer to a small jar, add oil, cover tight and store at room temperature. Sauce will keep several weeks. Use sparingly to flavor hot sauce for couscous, meatballs, and meat loaves. Replenish oil each time so that the spice mixture is covered at all times by about ⅓ in oil.
When making harissa, you may substitute crushed or ground spices for the whole and omit roasting them, but the flavor of the harissa will.