She finely chopped some onions, tossed it with spices, poured tomato puree, allowed it cook for a while and then cracked a few eggs on top! I stood there, watching my roommate, as she effortlessly made our late night dinner. It was probably a version of Shakshuka that she was preparing but neither of us knew. In terms of cooking, that phase of my life was completely different. I had just moved out of home and knew absolutely nothing about cooking, let alone pull a meal together. I was just lucky to have lived with this amazing roommate who not only cooked for us everyday but also got me involved and I started to learn. That tomato cracked egg curry, as I used to call it, became my go-to meal.
When I came across an authentic Shakshuka recipe for the first time, I was kind of stunned. So, the dish did have a name! Of course, our version was a lot different in terms of spices used and definitely had less panache but the idea was similar. I only wish there was someway I could get in touch with my roommate and share this authentic version with her.
This one skillet, egg baked in tomato gravy is perfect for a busy weeknight but in Israel, it’s typically served for breakfast with some pita or challah on the side. Either way, it’s a treat.
For the past few months, I have been working with Foodhall India, creating recipes and photographing them. Their site is finally up and you should check it out. It’s definitely one of my favorite gourmet stores and now, the spread of recipes makes it even better.
- 5 eggs
- 1 red onion finely chopped
- 1 red pepper finely chopped
- 2 red tomatoes finely chopped
- 1 cup tomato puree
- 1 teaspoon cumin powder
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- ¼ cup crumbled feta cheese
- ¼ cup parmesan cheese
- 4 garlic cloves finely chopped
- finely chopped cilantro for garnish
- Add oil in a hot pan and drop the chopped garlic. Stir and allow it to infuse the oil for a while. In a minute or so, scatter the chopped onion. Season with salt and pepper and allow it to soften a bit. Make sure the onion does not brown.
- Next, scatter the chopped red peppers and continue slow cooking until the peppers are softened. This should take about 10 minutes.
- Then, add chopped tomato, pour the tomato puree, sprinkle some salt and give it a stir. Add cumin powder, paprika and chili powder. Stir and continue cooking until it turns into a thick sauce. Add water if it gets too dry or starts sticking at the bottom of the pan.
- The sauce should take a few minutes to be ready and once done, add both feta cheese and parmesan cheese. Give it a stir. Then, crack the eggs on the sauce and cover the pan. In about two minutes, the eggs should be cooked through.
- Sprinkle finely chopped cilantro and serve warm.