Shakshuka | The Domestic Man

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Shakshuka is a dish of tomatoes, peppers, and poached eggs, ubiquitous in North Africa and the Middle East. Countries across the Middle East, from Yemen to Turkey, claim to have first created the dish, where it then supposedly spread across North Africa. Regardless of origin, I like to think the best Shakshuka embodies many of the countries and cultures that claim ownership of this dish, so I like to incorporate many influences, like Harissa from Morocco, or olives and artichoke hearts from across the Mediterranean.

And that’s the beauty of this dish – there are so many possible variations, all readily available in most pantries and fridges, that this dish can be cooked up most any morning; it only takes a few extra minutes to turn your typical fried eggs into something magical. Today’s recipe hosts an all-inclusive mix of possible additions, a tapestry of what you could use – but if you’re missing an ingredient or two, it’ll still turn out spectacularly. And if you don’t have any pre-made Harissa within arm’s reach, and want to capitalize on the spontaneous nature of this dish, simple replace the Harissa with some tomato paste and cayenne (measurements in the recipe below).

On a separate note, my friends at ButcherBox are celebrating their two-year birthday (just ahead of our youngest son, Elliott!). To celebrate, they’re throwing in a package of two 10oz ribeyes (a $25 value) for new customers’ first orders – that’s in addition to $10 off that The Domestic Man readers already receive by using my affiliate link. I’m a big fan of ButcherBox, and I look forward to receiving my customizable box every month – stocked full of staples and new cuts of beef, pork, and/or chicken every time. This offer expires at midnight on Tuesday, October 3rd, so don’t wait!

Shakshuka (Gluten-free, Paleo, Primal, Whole30 (omit dairy))

2 tbsp olive oil, more to drizzle at the end
1 tsp cumin seeds
2 medium onions, sliced (about 2 cups sliced)
2 bell peppers, thinly sliced (about 2 cups sliced)
2 tbsp Harissa (or 2 tbsp tomato paste + ½ tsp cayenne pepper)
1 tbsp sweet paprika
1 tsp ground coriander
1 bay leaf
1 (28oz) can whole, peeled tomatoes, fire-roasted preferred
1 (10oz-16oz) jar or can artichoke hearts, drained and cut into bite-sized pieces
4 eggs
½ cup whole fat yogurt or feta cheese (omit for Whole30/dairy-free)
¼ cup oil-cured black olives, chopped (canned black olives okay)
fresh chopped parsley to garnish

1. Warm the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the cumin seeds and toast until aromatic, about 30 seconds, then add onions and saute until just softened, about 4 minutes. Add the bell peppers and saute until the onions and peppers are softened, another 4 minutes.

2. Stir in the Harissa, paprika, coriander, and bay leaf; saute until aromatic, about 1 minute, then stir in the tomatoes and their juices. Simmer until the tomatoes are softened, breaking them up with a sturdy spoon as you go, about 10 minutes. Season with salt to taste, then gently add the artichoke pieces. Make four divots in the sauce, and crack eggs into the divots; cover the skillet until the whites of the eggs are cooked through, about 2 minutes, then remove from heat.

3. Scatter feta or spoon on some yogurt, and add the black olives and parsley; drizzle with olive oil and serve.

** Oil-cured olives are usually sold in jars, with a little oil to keep them moist; if you’re not able to find them on a grocery shelf with the other olives, most groceries with olive bars (The Fresh Market, or Whole Foods) will have them.

Note: In the year leading up to my new cookbook’s release, I will be regularly releasing these recipes to 1) maintain a continuing conversation with my readership and 2) give visitors to this site an opportunity to test and provide feedback before editing. For more information on this new approach, read my post here.

Don’t forget to grab this week’s deal with ButcherBox – two 10oz ribeyes (a $25 value) + $10 off new orders – which expires midnight Tuesday, October 3rd. See you next week!

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