I had never heard of Shakshuka until I started following a bunch of instagram foodies. Then, all of a sudden, it was in my Insta feed…seemingly every day, all of the time, everywhere I looked. At first I was curious what it was, then I was intrigued about making it, then the other day I was like I HAVE TO MAKE THIS NOW!
So…that’s what I did.
However, I was so impatient about trying it that I didn’t want to wait and go to the store to buy all the ingredients. I had a full fridge, so it seemed silly to go buy some additional ingredients to make this one specific dish.
In true Emie fashion, I decided to make some substitutions and just go with the flow. I used a recipe for guidance but then used whatever I had and threw in some ingredients I wanted to use up or thought would be a tasty additional!
If you’re trying to make an authentic Shakshuka? Not the way to go. BUT if you’re trying to make something delicious and convenient – adding and substituting things that you have on hand is perfectly acceptable!
I used this NYT Recipe for inspiration. It is also a somewhat untraditional rendition of the dish, because it calls for feta crumbles on top. I love feta and had some on hand, so it was a perfect addition!
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 1 bell pepper, seeded and thinly sliced
- 1/2 zucchini, chopped (wanted to use it up, so I threw it in)
- 1 tiny clove of garlic (I have a garlic sensitivity and get stomach aches if I eat too much – feel free to add the 3 cloves the recipe calls for)
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp smoked paprika (didn’t have sweet paprika)
- Cayenne pepper to taste (we like spicy!)
- 1 fresh tomato, diced + 1 can diced tomatoes
- 2 large leaves of chard, chopped finely (wanted to add greens and use them up)
- salt + pep
- healthy sprinkling of feta cheese (vegan? ditch the feta, it would still be tasty!)
- 4 eggs
- Homegrown chives & oregano for garnish (they use cilantro)
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
- Heat oil in cast iron pan. We didn’t have an onion so we skipped that step and jumped right in to the bell pepper. We cooked it for 10-15 minutes until soft. Then added zucchini and garlic, sautéing for 2 min and then added the cumin, paprika and cayenne. After a minute or two, add the tomatoes and season with salt & pepper.
- Simmer until tomatoes have thickened. NYT says 10 minutes but it took mine a little longer. I add the chard in right near the end to let the leaves soften. Then stir in the feta – we just eyeballed it, stirring in less than the recipe called for but still a healthy amount!
- Crack eggs in over the tomatoes, careful to note break the yolks, and season with more salt & pepper.
- Transfer the pan to the oven and bake until the eggs are just set. Recipe says 7-10 minutes but our egg whites were still jiggly when we moved the pan. We left it in another 5 minutes, checking periodically. When we removed ours, the yolks were a little harder than we would have liked, so next time we will remove ours a minute or two before we think they are done!
- Season with herbs and serve with hot sauce. We served ours with buttered sourdough toast – though pita or challah bread is more traditional!
Enjoy! We were ooohing and ahhing over every bite. It’s such a fun experiment to try a new recipe and realize you LOVE it. We will probably end up making this on a regular basis now! I encourage you to experiment and throw in what you have in the fridge – who knows, maybe you’ll like it even more than the traditional version of the dish!
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