Samaka Harra (Chili Fish)

Your favorite type of fish stuffed with flavorful sun-dried red pepper and walnut. A dish easy to make yet suitable your big and small feasts.


  • 1 cleaned whole fish, cut lengthwise
  • 1 head mashed garlic
  • 1 1/4 cup chopped walnut
  • 1 cup chopped sun-dried (or roasted) red bell pepper
  • 1/2 cup olive oil For the rub:
  • 1 teaspoon dried ground cilantro
  • 1 tablespoon Bharat (Syrian Spice Mix)
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon ground red pepper
  • 2 tablespoons salt to taste


  1. Prepare the rub for the fish by mixing salt and all spices. Rub the outside of the fish with it. Do not remove the skin off the fish. Sprinkle a little rub inside the fish. Leave the fish in the refrigerator for 2-6 hours.
  2. To prepare the stuffing mix the walnuts with sun-dried red pepper and a dash of salt and pepper. You can replace the latter with roasted red pepper. Just quarter the red bell pepper, seed them, sprinkle with some olive oil and roast in a 350 oven for 30 minutes or until they lose most of the juices (but not become dehydrated) .
  3. Open the fish, and spread the stuffing evenly inside. Place closed (or opened with stuffing on both sides) in a big try covered with aluminum foil and sprinkle generously with olive oil (amount of oil depends on how big the fish is)
  4. Set in a 375 oven for 30 minutes or until done and flaky. Cooking time will vary depending on the type of the fish.
  5. Eat hot with flat bread and tarator dip or lemon-garlic vinaigrette.
  6. Note: ingredients amounts will vary depending on the size of the fish. You can also use half a fish.