Tuesday, 17 April 2012


Ever had shakshuka?  A dish that can be pulled together quickly and economically and tastes great too.  It's been a standby supper, lunch, brunch and breakfast menu for some time in our family.  Essentially it is eggs poached in tomato sauce but once you taste it, you realize it is so much more.  I have seen a lot of variations of this recipe, some with feta, with jalapenos, with chickpeas... the list goes on.  I've tried a lot of versions but this is my current favourite.

I like the addition of chickpeas for a little added protein and the sprinkling of za'atar spice at the end really puts it over the top.  For those of you who went to the trouble to make the za'atar spice for this chicken , you now have another use for the spice up in your cupboard.

The recipe makes a fairly large serving size and is great when having brunch with a crowd.  Sometimes I will make the sauce in advance on the weekend and then pull it out for a quick weeknight meal by simply reheating the sauce and adding the eggs.
The sauce itself doesn't take long to make and is mostly ingredients you have on hand.  I've included instructions on how to make it in individual servings as well so you are not committed to making a huge meal.   
Traditionally served with pita bread, we prefer ours with some sautéed spinach and hearty wholegrain bread on the side


adapted from bon appetit 
2 Tbsp oil
1 onion
1 red,yellow,orange pepper
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 can tomatoes
1 tsp sugar
1 cup water
4 Tbsp fresh parsley (divided)
1 cup chickpeas
6-8 eggs
2 Tbsp za'atar
Preheat oven to 400degrees.  In a large pan saute onions in oil for approximately 8 minutes until onion is soft.  Add the peppers and cook 2-3min more.  Add the cumin and paprika and cook 1 min more.  Add the tomatoes and their juices.  Crush the tomatoes using the back of a wood spoon in the pan.  Add the sugar, water and chickpeas and bring to a boil.  Reduce the heat and simmer until thickened (about 10min).  Add the fresh parsley and stir.
If you choose to serve as individual portions, divide the tomato sauce into 6-8 ramekins.  Make a small indentation and crack the egg in this hole.  Place ramekins in oven and bake 5-8min until yolks are set but still runny. 
Sprinkle with za'atar spice and fresh parsley before serving.  Eat with toast if you like.
Alternately, you can crack eggs into the large pan one at a time evenly distributed.  Cover the pan and cook on the stove top for 10min until yolks are set.  This is easier if you're serving 4 or more people.

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