Also referred to as Eggs in Purgatory, Shakshuka is a dish of eggs poached in a sauce of tomatoes, chili peppers, and onions, often spiced with cumin and paprika. It is believed to have originated in Tunisia.
I roasted fresh tomatoes from my garden today and for lunch, I made shakshuka. It can also be made with canned tomatoes but it is delicious with fresh roasted tomatoes. This dish is spicy, hence the nickname, Eggs in Purgatory. You can lower the heat by using sweet peppers or seeding the hot chile.
- 2 pounds ripe tomatoes (cored and quartered, or two 14-ounce cans of diced or crushed tomatoes)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 medium onion (peeled and diced)
- 3 cloves garlic (peeled and thinly sliced)
- 1 chile pepper stemmed (seeds removed, finely diced/minced)
- 1 ½ teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon paprika (smoked or sweet (I used smoked))
- ¾ teaspoon ground cumin
- ½ teaspoon ground turmeric
- 2 teaspoons sugar
- 1 TBS apple cider vinegar
- ¼ cup fresh parsley (chopped)
- 2 ounces feta cheese (cubed or crumbled)
- 4 to 6 eggs
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Wash, core, and quarter the tomatoes and place on two large baking sheets. Dice the onion, mince the garlic and chile, and add to the baking sheets with the tomatoes. Toss with the olive oil and season with the salt and pepper.
- Place the baking sheets in the oven and roast for 55-60 minutes. When most of the liquid is reabsorbed place the baking sheets under the broiler for about five minutes until the tomatoes have a little char on them.Remove the pans from the broiler and allow the vegetables to cool slightly.
- Carefully add the roasted vegetables to a food processor and pulse three or four times but leave them a bit chunky.
- Add the tomatoes sauce to a large cast iron skillet with the cumin, paprika, turmeric, sugar, and vinegar. Cook the sauce over low heat for about ten minutes then add the chopped parsley. Remove from heat. You can either finish the dish in the large skillet or spoon the sauce into individual serving sized oven-proof dishes.
- If you want to finish the Shakshuka on the stovetop, turn off the heat and sprinkle the feta onto the tomato sauce. With the back of a spoon, make 6 indentations in the sauce. Crack an egg into each indentation. Simmer over low heat for about 10 minutes, basting the egg whites from time-to-time with the sauce being careful not to break the yolks.
- To finish them individually, preheat the oven to 350ºF. Divide the sauce into 6 oven-proof baking dishes and sprinkle the feta cheese onto the sauce. Set the baking dishes on a baking sheet, make an indentation in each, and crack an egg into the center. Bake until the eggs are cooked to your liking, basting the whites with some of the sauce midway during baking. Remove from the oven when the eggs are cooked to your liking.
- Serve hot with warm pita or crusty bread to soak up the sauce.