Piece of life
Back from vacation !
Now that our beautiful little tour of Northern Quebec is over, I have to deal with the joys of unpacking, the piles of laundry and an empty fridge. And no way to go to the store after hours of driving and exhausted kids. But, luckily, my freezer is always well supplied. I dug out some frozen peppers and tomatoes, add a few eggs [I always keep a box in the fridge], and there you have the basis for the famous Shakshuka recipe. A recipe from Ottolenghi… it’s been a while, hasn’t it? He has many Shakshuka recipes, this one is from his book Jerusalem [my favorite].
About the shakshuka
I’ve already talked about Shakshuka on the blog, with a Spinach Chakchouka [I’m lost for its spelling, so many ways]… Although the possibilities are endless, the one I’m proposing today is probably the most classic, with tomatoes and peppers. I added some black olives and a little feta cheese [that were waiting in my fridge], you can omit them or change them to your liking.
The recipe is simple, one pot style [you cook everything in the same pan]. I like a runny yolk [and it is how they should be in a Shakshouka] so I don’t cook them too long, but you can cook longer for firmer eggs.
Ottolenghi recommends using pilpelchuma. And you will ask me what it is… well it is a condiment, a spicy garlic paste, used in Israeli cuisine (originating from the Lebanese Jewish community). Otherwise, he suggests using harissa [which I obviously had more easily].
Ottolenghi serves the shakshuka with labneh or yogurt, I simply served it with fresh bread, it’s perfect for dipping in the sauce and the runny eggs.
Shakshuka (Jerusalem : A cookbook – Ottolenghi)
- 400 g peppers cut into thick strips (I use yellow and orange ones)
- 5 large ripe tomatoes (about 800 g) (or canned or frozen)
- 6 to 8 eggs
- 100 g feta cheese
- 4 cloves of garlic minced
- 2 tsp tomato paste
- 1 to 2 tbsp harissa (to taste) (or pilpelchuma)
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 10 larges pitted Kalamata olives
- olive oil
- salt & pepper to taste
- Drizzle olive oil into the pan and heat over medium heat.
- Add harissa (or pilpelchuma), tomato paste, peppers, garlic, cumin and salt to taste. Fry for about 8 minutes.
- Add the tomatoes, once the mixture is simmering let it cook until the sauce thickens, about 10 minutes (more if the tomatoes are frozen). Add the olives to the sauce.
- Form 8 small pits in the sauce and break an egg into each. With a fork, gently stir the white into the sauce. Cook for 10 minutes, until the white is cooked and the yolk is still runny (or longer if you want firmer eggs).
- Sprinkle with crumbled feta cheese, salt and pepper to taste.
- Serve with slices of fresh bread (and yogurt or labneh for Ottolenghi-style).