Originally coming from North Africa, shakshuka has spread throughout the Middle East. The popularity of this breakfast dish is surpassed only by the number of variations to its recipe. And actually, that makes sense, given that the name shakshuka loosely translates to “all mixed up” in Arabic. People have been mixing it up and customizing this comforting dish to fit their preferred tastes, and to utilize the ingredients they have handy and the flavors of the region they inhabit. In fact, the variations of shakshuka are still increasing today due to it spreading across more oceans and the incorporation of new ingredients.
This one-skillet recipe is traditionally served for breakfast or brunch; however, it also makes a hearty meal that is more and more often showing up at lunch and even dinner. Today I’ll share a shakshuka recipe made to please the masses, and can certainly be used as a base from which you can design your own creation.
Eggs – 5 or 6
Onion – Halved & Thinly Sliced
Red bell Pepper – seeded & Thinly Sliced
Stewed Peeled Tomatoes – 1 Can (28oz)
Fresh Tomato – 1 Large or 2 Roma
Feta Cheese – 1/2 Cup
Garlic – 2 Cloves, Crushed & Minced
Ground Black Pepper
Crushed Red Pepper Flakes
Green Onion – 2, Thinly Chopped
Parsley or Cilantro
Step 1: Building the Base
- Heat 1 tbsp olive oil in a large skillet over med-low.
- Add the thinly sliced onion and red bell pepper. Cook until very soft. About 20 mins.
- Add the crushed and finely minced garlic, and cook until tender. About 2 mins.
- Add 1 tsp each of: ground cumin and paprika. Also add 3/4 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp ground black pepper, 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper, and 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes.
- Let these cook together for another minute until fragrant.
Step 2: Making the Tomato Stew
- Pour in the can of stewed tomatoes, including the juice. If tomatoes are whole, crush or roughly chop them. Stir to thoroughly combine all ingredients.
- Add slices of fresh tomato. Cook until tomato stew mixture has thickened. About 10 mins.
- Taste. Adjust flavor to liking by adding additional salt or other spices as desired.
Step 3: Poaching the Eggs
- Use a spoon to make impressions in the stew; one for each egg to be added.
- Gently crack and add eggs into the “cups” you’ve made on top of the stew mixture. Try not to break the yolks. Lightly season eggs with salt & pepper.
- Loosely spread the crumbled feta cheese on top of the eggs and tomatoes.
- Cover skillet and return to med-low heat to cook for another 10 minutes.
- Check on the dish… You want to remove it from the heat when eggs are poached and yolks are still slightly runny inside.
- Garnish with chopped green onion, parsley/cilantro. (and an extra pinch of salt, black pepper, and crushed rep pepper to taste)
Serve your shakshuka while it’s still hot, along with pita or challah bread and sliced avocado.
I also love adding the cooling creaminess of labneh to go with the bright, spicy flavors of this shakshuka recipe.