A very popular breakfast dish is shakshuka. When done right, it is full of rich flavour, as well as being nutritious and filling. I have been making shakshuka on and off for a couple of years now, but it always tasted a bit too…. tomato-ey. Then I was introduced to rose harissa paste, and my life changed.
I will still openly admit that my favourite shakshuka (so far) was at a B&B in Belgrade last summer, but this recipe comes pretty close!
Shakshuka, for those that don’t know, is a tomato-based vegetarian stew which forms a bed for eggs to be baked in, and enjoyed with freshly baked bread.
Now, I have to put my hand up and say that a while ago I tried to make my own sourdough, but I think I killed my starter – so when I baked the sourdough it didn’t rise at all. I was going to attempt it again over the Easter holidays, but I got a bit distracted with other recipes and being outside.
This whole week has revolved around rugby, given that it’s the infamous Hong Kong 7s this weekend. However, I decided not to go this year, so I have been enjoying all of the build-up to it instead: GFI 10s and the Bali Memorial game. Having said that, I’ve spent most of today at home making myself breakfast and lunch, dinner will come in a little while.
So, instead of making sourdough, I bought some yesterday – which means I need to get the most out of it today because otherwise it will go hard and stale. Luckily, I had some of the bread with my shakshuka, and I also made Jamie’s “Delicious Dressed Greek Greens on Toast” from his book Jamie Does… Unfortunately, I don’t have the rights to publish that recipe, and it’s not on his website either – but it was a great, simple lunch that allowed me to indulge in my love of sourdough a bit more.
Shakshuka is traditionally cooked in a cast iron skillet, as part of the dish is done over the hob and the rest is done in an oven. However, I don’t have a skillet – and my oven is too small for most conventionally-sized skillets even if I wanted one. So instead, I did it in a frying pan, and transferred the tomato stew over to an oven-proof dish before cracking in the eggs. The overall taste and effect is the same, so there’s no need to rush out and buy new equipment (yet).
It does take a little bit of preparation and time to make the shakshuka, but it is 100% worth it – I promise.
1 large onion, diced
1/2 red pepper, diced
1/2 yellow pepper, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp smoked paprika
1/2 tsp sugar
2 tbsp rose harissa paste
1 tbsp tomato puree
1 can chopped/crushed tomatoes
4 eggs (2 per person)
salt & pepper to taste
sourdough or fresh bread rolls to serve
- Preheat the oven to 190°C.
- Heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a frying pan (or skillet) on a medium-high heat, and add the onion and peppers to the pan until onions are soft and translucent.
- Add the garlic, paprika, sugar, harissa and tomato puree. Combine well and cook for a further minute or two. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Add the canned tomatoes, and allow to simmer for 10 minutes until most of the liquid has concentrated down.
- If using a frying pan, transfer the tomato stew to an oven-proof dish, ensuring the stew is evenly spread across the dish.
- Make nests for the eggs, and crack the eggs into these spaces within the stew.
- Place the skillet, or oven-proof dish, into the oven for 10 minutes (until the eggs are cooked through).
- Serve with fresh rolls or sourdough, and enjoy.