How to make the perfect shakshuka
Shakshuka is a delicious, one-pan, baked eggs dish that has its roots in the Middle East and North Africa. It's very easy to make and can be eaten for breakfast, lunch or dinner.
The cornerstone of any shakshuka is the spicy tomato sauce and there are hundreds of versions out there calling on different vegetables, spices and aromatics. This shakshuka recipe uses a classic, spicy tomato sauce made with tinned tomatoes but you could consider using very ripe fresh tomatoes if they are in season.
The tomato sauce should come together pretty quickly on the stove top and once you've done that, you will gently crack the eggs into the pan so they fit snugly within the thick sauce. For simplicity's sake, this shakshuka recipe uses a lid on the pan to cook the eggs, rather than oven baking.
To finish, we suggest crumbled feta cheese be added for the last two minutes of cooking so it softens and slightly melts in the heat. Alternatively, labneh (thick, strained Greek-style yoghurt) can be spooned on top just before serving.
- 2 tablespoons (30ml) of extra virgin olive oil
- 2 red capsicum, chopped into 1-2cm pieces
- 1 brown onion, roughly chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 1-2 long red chillies, chopped, to taste
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1 tablespoon paprika
- 400g can chopped tomatoes, undrained
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 4 eggs
- ½ cup feta cheese or labneh (optional)
- 2 tablespoons chopped coriander
- Pita bread, toasted, to serve
1) Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan over a medium heat. Add the chopped capsicum and onion and cook (stirring occasionally until soft but not brown) for about 6 minutes. Add garlic, cumin and paprika and cook (stirring frequently until garlic is soft) for about 2 more minutes.
2) Add the tomatoes and bring to a simmer for 5 minutes. Taste and season with salt and pepper. If the sauce is too thick, you can add a splash of water.
3) Make four indents in the simmering sauce with the back of a spoon to create a little hole for the eggs. Gently break an egg into each. Cover with a lid and gently simmer for 3-4 minutes or until the egg whites are set but the yolks are still slightly runny (cook for an extra 2 minutes if you like well-cooked eggs). If the eggs look undercooked, you can gently spoon some of the tomato sauce over the top of the eggs to baste them, being careful not to disturb the yolk. Add the feta cheese for the last 2 minutes.
4) Sprinkle chopped coriander on top and serve with toasted pita bread, if desired.
- If using labneh rather than feta, remove the pan from the heat before spooning it over the top of the dish.
- For meat lovers, you can add bacon, chorizo or spicy sausage to the sauce. If you do, add it to the pan at the same time as the capsicum.