Shakshuka

Shakshuka is a North African dish of eggs poached in a spicy tomato sauce. I first read about it over at Smitten Kitchen. I had tried making her eggs in tomato sauce, which were lovely on a bit of sourdough toast but not quite interesting enough to make again. Comments on that post led her to make shakshuka, which looked far more up my street.

I put it on my list of things to try one day, and then Yotam Ottolenghi’s new book, Plenty, arrived with a recipe for shakshuka in it.

If you read my last post on Plenty, you’ll recall that I was slightly disappointed by the leek fritter recipe. This really only stood out because it’s the first Ottolenghi recipe I’ve tried that hasn’t been completely mind-blowing.

His recipe for shakshuka involves red and yellow peppers, tomatoes, onions, and various spices and seasonings. I received red peppers in my veg box this week so decided to give it a go, leaving out the yellow peppers and halving the recipe to feed two instead of four.

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The sauce can be made in advance, so all that remains is to put the eggs in, cover and cook for fifteen minutes.

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A sprinkle of coriander leaves – first harvest from my balcony – and it was ready to taste. What was the verdict? Absolutely delicious. We mopped up every last bit of sauce with our bread. The egg yolk came out set when I would have preferred runny, so perhaps I’ll shorten the cooking time next time. But there will definitely be a next time. Ottolenghi, all is forgiven!

Oh, and if you want to try it, you don’t need to buy the book. The recipe is available on the Guardian website. And then you will buy the book. Oh yes you will.

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