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spiced curiosity | shakshuka
shakshuka – savory egg dish with rich tomatoes #vegetarian #healthy

Monday, August 18, 2014

shakshuka – savory egg dish with rich tomatoes

Let’s be honest – when summer rolls around, I get lazy with cooking. When I’d rather stroll outside than sweat in the kitchen, I fancy simple dishes like Shakshuka that yield delicious results. One pot, one casual hour of stirring, and tons of forgivability. Don’t have the exact amount of garlic? Forget the cumin? Only have 4 eggs instead of 6? That is quite alright. It will still taste amazing. As a thick stew of rich, fragrant tomatoes with soft-boiled eggs, Shakshuka is the ultimate breakfast.

I love to serve this as a no-hassle, tasty, and healthful brunch item when friends come over. Shakshuka is impressively flavorful and hearty without the fuss, so I can get on with making actually intensive food. (Like homemade grissini. Wow, never again.)

shakshuka – savory egg dish with rich tomatoes #vegetarian #healthy

Also, I feel great about serving this dish to loved ones for brunch because it’s nutrient-dense and seasonal. Tomatoes multiply their lycopene when cooked, and they’re even better when you buy them now during summer. Other produce that’s wildly in season can be thrown in the pot, too: swiss chard, mustard greens, and spinach – which only add to the tomatoes’ Vitamin C content. In addition to Shakshuka’s tasty in-season plants, it offers eggs for non-fried protein.

shakshuka – savory egg dish with rich tomatoes #vegetarian #healthy

shakshuka – savory egg dish with rich tomatoes #vegetarian #healthy

After reading The Omnivore’s Dilemma by Michael Pollan, I heartily recommend checking out your farmers market for beauties grown in your area. Not only do greenmarkets yield astonishingly fresh produce and protein, but they support your local farmers, diminish greenhouse gas usage, and are sometimes cheaper than the supermarket. If you’re curious about how our food system works, check out this sweet infographic for a quick rundown. If you’re game for a longer read, I recommend Pollan’s book. Between reading his account and joining a Brooklyn CSA, I always try to buy my vegetables, fruit, and herbs seasonally and locally; it’s easier on my environment, health, and pocketbook.

shakshuka – savory egg dish with rich tomatoes #vegetarian #healthy


shakshuka – savory egg dish with rich tomatoes #vegetarian #healthy

I hope you enjoy every bit of this savory meal and the rest of summer. I’ve got a slew of plans for more tomatoes and end-of-season produce. What’s on your seasonal bucket list?

shakshuka – savory egg dish with rich tomatoes

Yield: serves 4-5 people


  • 1 Tbsp. high-heat oil (coconut, grapeseed, etc.)
  • 1 large red onion – diced
  • 1 red bell pepper – seeded, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves – minced
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 tsp. smoked paprika
  • 1.5 tsp. sea salt + more to taste
  • 2 lbs. very ripe tomatoes – diced, with juices
  • 5-7 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup chopped parsley – minced


  1. In a large skillet, warm up oil over medium-high heat. When shimmering, add onion and pepper. Sauté for 5-7 minutes or until onion begins to turn translucent. If onions dry out, add splashes of water.
  2. Add garlic, cumin, paprika, and salt and toss to coat. Sauté for 2 minutes, then add tomatoes with all their juices. Turn up heat and bring tomato base to a simmer. Stir occasionally, and cook for 15 minutes or until tomato base has condensed quite a bit.
  3. With a wooden spatula, make 5-7 evenly-spaced cavities in the base. Crack one egg into each cavity, then cover skillet with a lid. Let eggs cook until just set, then remove from heat and serve immediately. Voilà!


1. When chopping the tomatoes, take care to save all their juices! You want them in the pot, not dripping off the cutting board. 2. If you want to add greens, chop a cup of spinach/mustard greens/swiss chard. Add it in before you crack the eggs. 3. Paprika is a must. Please don't leave it out. It makes the entire dish deliciously smoky. 4. This goes amazingly well with thick, crusty bread to scoop up the sauce. I recommend whole wheat or gluten-free olive bread. (The Italian part of myself comes out.)


I shared this with The Southern Special, Real Food Wednesday, and Fresh Foods Wednesday.

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