Shakshuka: Otherwise known as eggs in purgatory, shakshuka is a Middle Eastern dish of eggs poached in a fiery tomato sauce with a sprinkle of feta and fresh herbs on top. Made for dinner or breakfast on the coldest of days, this meal is always a winner!
After a winter with over 63 inches total (nearly twice the average amount), much of which just kept piling up on top of what the last storm left (read: we’ve literally had snow on the ground, continuously, since the end of January), the first day of spring started off with more of the white stuff.
And then it snowed ALL DAY on Saturday. My drive to work was a snowy one yesterday and we’re expecting more this week – you know, in the week leading up to Easter? When daffodils and hyacinth and tulips reign supreme?
Yeah…there haven’t been any daffodils popping up here yet. Womp. Womp.
What is Shakshuka?
So this egg dish, shakshuka – or more commonly known as eggs in purgatory – is definitely a fitting meal for this crazy weather we’re having for 2 reasons:
1. The eggs are nestled and poached in a warmly spiced and fiery hot pepper and tomato sauce that just screams cold, cozy winter meal and,
2. You know, New England sort of feels like being caught up between two worlds right now. Purgatory at its finest.
Some salty feta cheese gets added to the top of everything after the eggs are poached and let me tell you something. The feta perfectly balances the dish’s complex flavors.
What to Serve with Shakshuka?
Shakshuka is a fairly hearty meal on its own, especially if you serve some crusty bread or naan bread with it to sop up all that delicious sauce and the runny egg yolks.
But, if you want to stretch the meal out to extra servings, you could certainly serve it atop some creamy polenta, homemade gnocchi, zippy cilantro lime rice, or even some oven fries for a substantial dinner.
Hopefully one day soon I’ll have a new grillin’ and chillin’ recipe to share with you but for now, this one is juuust right.
- 1 28-ounce can whole peeled tomatoes, undrained
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 4 Anaheim chiles or 2 banana peppers or 3 jalapenos, stemmed, seeded, and finely chopped
- 1 small yellow onion, chopped
- 5 cloves garlic, crushed then sliced
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tbsp sweet paprika
- ½ cup water
- Kosher salt, to taste
- 6 eggs
- ½ cup feta cheese, crumbled
- 1 tbsp chopped flat-leaf parsley or cilantro
- Warm pita or crusty bread, for serving
- Pour the tomatoes and their liquid into a large bowl and gently break them up with your hands; set aside.
- Heat the oil in a 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat and saute the chopped peppers and onions for about 5 to 6 minutes, until they have softened. Add in the garlic, cumin, and paprika and stir for about 1 minute, until fragrant and the garlic is soft.
- Turn the heat down to medium-low and add the tomatoes, all of the tomato liquid, and the water to the skillet. Simmer the tomatoes, stirring occasionally, until the sauce has slightly thickened, about 15 minutes. Season with salt to taste.
- Break the eggs over the sauce. Cover the skillet and allow the eggs to cook until they are just set, about 4 to 5 minutes. Spoon some of the sauce over the eggs, sprinkle the feta and parsley/cilantro over the eggs, and serve while still hot with warm pita or crusty bread on the side.
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