Say it – go on. Say it. It’s fun. 1…2…3…shakshouka! It’s even more fun to eat it, and delightfully easy to make it. An ancient dish that has come in many forms, we’re essentially talking about a spicy tomato stew with some protein in it – most commonly, eggs. The eggs stew directly in the tomato sauce and when topped with the incredible freshness of feta, lemon and fresh herbs…my goodness, it’s wondrous. And made right, you’re looking at less than 400 calories a portion!
I’ve made this shakshouka with black eyed beans, but you can pretty much whack in anything. Minced beef or lamb, different lentils and pulses – whatever you like. Just be sure to say it as you serve it. SHAKSHOUKA!
- Peppers – I used a mixture of red and green
- Brown onions
- Chopped tomatoes/passata – half a can or so per person
- Beans – I used black eyes beans but feel free to experiment
- Garlic cloves
- Crushed ginger
- Cinnamon powder
- Crushed chilli (or fresh, chopped in with the peppers)
- Worcester Sauce
- Brown sugar
- Salt and Pepper
- Bread for dipping
- Feta/goats cheese
- Chopped Parsley
- Fresh lemon/lime zest and juic
- Yoghurt thinned with a splash of water
- Add a generous glug of oil to a wide based saucepan/deep frying pan – preferably one with a lid. Add diced onion and pepper – exact amount to your liking, i went for half of each per person. Fry until soft and beginning to colour.
- Add a few crushed garlic cloves – again, this is to taste. I like it very garlicy so went with 2 cloves per person. Also roughly half a teaspoon each of ginger, cinnamon, crushed chilli and paprika – you can always add more later if you need, but it’s nice to wake it up in the oil. Fry for a minute or two more, being careful not to let the garlic burn.
- Add around 1/2 can chopped tomatoes/passata and stir through with a few teaspoons of Worcester sauce and splash of balsamic. Add a teaspoon at a time of brown sugar tasting after each until the tartness of the tomatoes has sufficiently calmed.
- Add your beans and simmer for anywhere between 10 and 20 minutes – until the mixture has got thick enough that you can make a divot with the back a spoon that holds its indentation.
- One at a time, crack your eggs into a ramekin and gently pour into the divots. Crack a bit of salt and pepper onto the eggs, then cover the pan and keep on a simmer for another 3ish minutes. Keep a very close eye on the eggs. There’s a lot of heat in the tomato sauce and remember, even when removed from the hob that heat will keep transferring. Ideally, take them off when they look about 80% done and by the time you’ve served them the whites will be firm and the yolks still runny.
- Top with your chosen features – I love the sour sweetness of lemon zest and juice, crumbled salty feta and some citrusy chopped parsley. Serve with bread for dipping and wiping the bowl.