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November 10, 2010 / amyjmcintosh

Shakshuka


In the words of Kate Bush, “Babushka, Babushka, Babushka-ya-ya”. Do you remember that song from the ’80s? It springs into my head every time I think of Shakshuka – a middle Eastern egg dish that is currently rocking my world.

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Forget scrambling, boiling or frying your eggs. Shakshuka is where it’s at, my friends. Cooked in a sauce of tomatoes, peppers, onions and spices, and served with pita bread, it’s clearly the way forward for anyone looking for a new breakfast sensation.

The origins of this spicy egg creation are the cause of much debate. Some say it’s Moroccan while others insist it’s Jewish. Whatever the origin, one thing is certain, Shakshuka is one of the best brekky dishes on the block.

With this in mind, I challenge you to forgo a trip to your local cafe this weekend and cook Shakshuka instead. Before you chicken out, believe me when I say, it’s a cinch to make, kind to the hips and the back pocket, and can be whipped up in a jiffy. Just make sure you do something nice for the poultry world by using free-range, organic eggs.

Shakshuka [Eggs Poached in Spicy Tomato Sauce]
Adapted from Saveur
Serves 4-6

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
3 jalapeños, stemmed, seeded, and finely chopped
1 small brown onion, chopped
8 cloves garlic, crushed
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tbs paprika
1 x 800g can whole peeled tomatoes, undrained
salt, to taste
8 free-range eggs
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese (optional)
1 tbs chopped flat-leaf parsley
warm pita, for serving

1. Heat oil in a frypan over medium-high heat. Add chiles and onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft and golden brown, about 6 minutes. Add garlic, cumin, and paprika, and cook, stirring frequently, until garlic is soft, about 2 more minutes.

2. Put tomatoes and their liquid into a medium bowl and crush with your hands. Add crushed tomatoes and their liquid to skillet along with 1/2 cup water, reduce heat to medium, and simmer, stirring occasionally, until thickened slightly, about 20 minutes. Season sauce with salt.

3. Crack eggs over sauce so that eggs are evenly distributed across sauce’s surface. Cover skillet and cook until yolks are just set, about 5 minutes. Using a spoon, baste the whites of the eggs with tomato mixture, being careful not to disturb the yolk. Sprinkle shakshuka with feta and parsley and serve with pita, for dipping.

2 Comments

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  1. Rebecca / Jan 1 2011 12:11 am

    A great spin on breakfast/brunch. We halved the quantities for a new year’s day breakfast with some compromises – we live 40km out of town and it’s a public holiday! We had to go without garlic, and substituted red capsicum and dried chillis for the jalapenos. A great way to cook eggs and I will definitely use this recipe again. Thanks Amy.

    • amyjmcintosh / Jan 1 2011 8:20 am

      So glad to hear you cooked the shashuka recipe! Thanks for the lovely feedback, Bec. And happy new year! xxx

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