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One of the best and most memorable, thanks to Tunisian harissa!

  • Dec 13, 2008
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The few days I spent in Tunisia were among the best from any of my vacations, not only because of the country's history and culture, but because of Tunisian cuisine. It's absolutely delicious, but not for those with weak stomachs.

First off, if you do choose to travel to North Africa, stick to your guidebook's restaurant recommendations. (I once strayed from the list and paid for it for several days on the toilet!)

That being said, Tunisian cuisine is like much of North Africa's, and includes lots of couscous and unique, thick stews full of vegetables and lamb. But what makes it all so incredibly delicious is harissa, their hot chili sauce. It's incredibly spicy, to the point where you wonder how anyone could find something this hot to be tasty. But let me tell you, after a few days, you get used to it, and when you finally return home or go back to Europe, everything tastes incredibly bland for a while (probably because your taste buds have become desensitized).

If there's one reason I'd go back to Tunisia, it'd be for its food. I have yet to find a Tunisian restaurant anywhere in California or the East Coast!

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Ali ()
Ranked #106
Member Since: Dec 8, 2008
Last Login: Jun 8, 2012 04:51 AM UTC
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About this food


Tunisian cuisine is heavily influenced by many cultures, including Arabic, French, desert,  Mediterranean, and Oriental. Because Tunisia has for thousands of years been home to numerous peoples, its cuisine is extremely varied but also distinct for its spicy nature. It is considered to be a "sun cuisine," consisting of olive oil, tomatoes, seafood, meats, and various seasonings.

Of note is Tunisian harissa, a hot red pepper sauce made from red chili peppers and garlic. Spices such as coriander, cumin, and other ingredients such as olive oil and tomatoes, may be added to taste. As in other North African Maghreb countries, couscous is also very popular.
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