Shakshuka, roughly translated, is an Israeli egg recipe but its origins are North African, Tunisia to be precise. Eggs are cracked into a spicy tomato sauce and baked until the whites are set and the yolks are still golden & runny. I’ve given it a little Mexicano flair adding smoked paprika for that adoboesque smoky flavor, black beans, cilantro, avocado & queso fresco. The results were delish, both hot & cold.
This recipe serves three masters – breakfast, lunch or dinner. That’s one of the many things I love about eggs, they’re such chameleons. Once relegated to breakfast and egg salad sandwiches, eggs have blossomed into this multi-meal supernova. And more often than not you see them teamed up with avocado although I can’t come at the cooked avocado thing. If you’ve not baked an egg, you need to, especially in a spicy tomato sauce. Another one-pan-wonder.
Eggs are inexpensive, even organic, free range eggs from chickens living high on the hog are inexpensive. Even those ‘free to roam the wide outdoors then nestled into 5- star living quarters of an evening’ chickens are inexpensive. You get my drift. Not only are eggs budget friendly, but they’re good for you, enjoying a resurgence of popularity thanks to paleo and low carb diets.
And eggs make speedy meals. Even this spicy shakshuka was thrown together in a jiffy. A quick tomato sauce simmered until thick, the eggs cracked oh-so-carefully into the bubbling sauce then the whole pan is popped in the oven for a few to cook. While the shakshuka was baking the rest of the ingredients were prepped: Black beans, avocado, cilantro and green onions. There’s no excuse for eating rubbish or take-away when you’ve got a carton of eggs lurking in the fridge. All that stands between you and a quick and easy dinner is imagination. So get crackin’…sorry…sorry!
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/2 cup diced onion
- 1/2 cup diced sweet red pepper (capsicum)
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed
- 1 to 2 tablespoons harissa (North African chili paste)
- 2 teaspoons ground smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- a good pinch of salt & freshly ground pepper
- 1/4 cup tomato paste
- 28 oz can diced tomatoes, not drained
- 6 large eggs
- 1/2, 14 oz (396g) can black beans, rinsed and drained
- 1/3 cup coarsely crumbled queso fresco (or feta cheese)
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro (coriander)
- 1/4 cup thinly sliced green onions
- Heat olive oil in a 10 to 12-inch frying pan on medium heat. Add onion, red pepper and garlic. Cook for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until softened.
- Add harissa, paprika, cumin, salt and pepper. Cook for 1 minute, stirring, until fragrant.
- Stir in tomato paste and undrained diced tomatoes. Cook, uncovered, for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until sauce thickens; remove from heat; cool slightly.
- Make six indents in sauce evenly spaced. Crack an egg into each indent. Sprinkle eggs with salt & pepper. Bake in 375°F oven for 12 to 15 minutes or until egg whites are cooked but yolks are still soft.
- Sprinkle with black beans (warmed or room temperature), queso fresco, cilantro and green onions.