Shakshouka

Break out the good plates and champagne. I’m back! There were some technical errors on the site, as well as some human error (read: writer’s block…okay okay, laziness), but the hiatus has come to an end…pending the next onset of human error.

While I’m here, I might as well drop a recipe on you folks. So voila: my shakshouka. This was inspired by a trip to Balaboosta, an Israeli restaurant in SoHo, for Sunday brunch. I was stupid and ordered a sandwich, but watched, mouth-open and drooling as waiters shuffled around with tiny, steaming cast iron cauldrons of the Mediterranean classic. The dish consists of a flavorful tomato sauce functioning as both stew and vessel to to gently poach eggs. It is usually served with a side of toasty bread for dipping.

Unable to get shakshouka off the brain, I went home and made my own the following Saturday. I spiced it with cinnamon, deepened it with honey, and sprinkled roasted olives (ask your grocer or just throw some olives in an oven with olive oil), feta and herbs on top. It’s an elegantly messy start to your weekend, and a guaranteed crowd pleaser.

Until next time!

Shakshouka
Serves 3-4

1 medium onion
1/2 stalk celery
3 cloves garlic
1/2 tsp grated ginger
1 small jalapeno (prefer chiles)
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper
1/2 yellow pepper
1/2 zucchini
1 28-oz can diced (or crushed) tomato
1 tbsp honey
4 eggs

1. Sautee the onion on celery until softened*. Add the garlic and ginger and sautee for another minute. Season with S&P, cinnamon and crushed red pepper. Add the yellow pepper and zuchini and sautee until soft.
2. Add the tomato to the softened vegetables, season with salt and pepper, cover the pot and simmer for 10 minute.
3. Uncover the pot and allow the mixture to thicken and the water to reduce for about 5 minutes. Taste for seasoning.
4. Make four wells into the mixture and crack and egg in each well.
Cover the pot and cook for 6-7 minutes for a slightly runny egg.

*try and use a castiron pot if you can

Shakshouka 1

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