Harissa, the North African chile paste, has found favor with chefs around the country, who whip up homemade batches from chilies, coriander, cumin, garlic and lemon to flavor everything from sandwiches to crockpot meals. Chef Jesse Schenker turns the condiment into a foam to top the hamachi tartare with sea urchin dish he serves at Recette in New York City.
Spice blend ras el hanout is a pantry staple in North African kitchens and offers an exotic, full-bodied hit of flavor with its combination of cardamom, cinnamon, clove, coriander, cumin, mace, nutmeg, paprika, peppercorn and turmeric, write Shuli and Ronit Madmone. Ras el hanout goes well with grilled meat, vegetable dishes and even chocolate desserts.
Need an alternative to trashing or composting that pumpkin after this week? Try these recipes for pumpkin bread, pancakes or soup. Smaller pumpkins -- 3 to 6 pounds -- can be cooked like any winter squash, and directions on baking a whole pumpkin are included.
Lyndon Baines Johnson had a sweet spot for lemon squares, and Abraham Lincoln took a liking to cookies with ginger. Recipes -- inspired by 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. -- for chocolate chip, peanut butter and sugar cookies are included.