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Yemenite Zhug

(recipe, Joan Nathan)

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Zhug is the Yemenite spicy sauce Hanna Levy makes three times a year in jars and freezes. Zhug and hilbe (a fenugreek sauce) are served with Yemenite chicken soup and pita bread. Use a teaspoon of this whenever you need a hot sauce.


  1. 1 lb. serrano peppers
  2. 5 whole heads of garlic, peeled
  3. 1 bunch of coriander (about 1 cup), well rinsed
  4. 1 tsp. diced hot red-pepper flakes, or to taste
  5. ½ tsp. cumin
  6. Salt, to taste
  7. Olive oil, to cover


  1. Place the peppers, garlic, and coriander in the bowl of a food processor and chop finely.
  2. Add the hot pepper, cumin, and salt, and mix well.
  3. Place in a 2-cup glass jar and cover with olive oil.