Nostalgia, Shakshuka and a French Loaf

February is here…

Around this time I usually start to feel a bit homesick. The winter stretches to no end, and our spring trip to France feels still far away…  Luckily on the way from work I can stop by Anton & Anton and shop around for “fancier” ingredients to spice up the daily routine. Today’s pick: A handful of organic eggs, some peanut butter chocolate & a rather spectacular looking loaf of “pain Au Levain”. As I drive back listening to Frerot Delavega‘s melancholic rhymes, I can’t help it but munch on the dark and flour-dusted crust while planning tonight’s dinner. 

Shakshuka is by far the simplest, most delicious dish I can think of. My grandma would make it as a side dish on Friday night’s dinner and we would joyfully dip large chunks of challah bread in the vibrantly red tomato sauce which had taken hours to caramelize and absorb the flavor of roasted paprika, fresh garlic and olive oil. It was only once I moved to Finland that one of my Israeli friends explained to me that this traditional dish is actually eaten in Israel as a meal with soft cooked eggs cracked onto the sauce at the last minute.

You can make this fairly fast, but i like to respect my grandma’s slow cooking approach on that one, so I personally let the tomato sauce simmer for at least an hour. Feel free to cut that time in half if you are too impatient to wait, but trust me… if you do spend the time, you won’t regret it either!
Ingredients for 2 people:

  1. 2 can of crushed tomatoe ( In summer you can use 800g  Fresh tomatoes crushed)
  2. 4 eggs (count 2 per person)
  3. 3 cloves of garlic
  4. half a red onion thinly minced
  5. 1 few pinches of Fresh Rosemary and thyme

  • Sautee the onions & garlic in a deep frying pan with olive oil until translucent
  • Add the crushed tomato and let simmer  at medium heat for as long as you can wait but minimum 20 minutes.
    • opt: As tomato tends to be a bit acidic, add a sprinkle or 2 of sugar  you can also add a splash of red wine to give more dimensions to the sauce.
    • Let cook first uncovered then covered at low heat & move around until thickened and the flavors have developed, add salt & pepper
  • Once the sauce is to a thicker consistency and tastes good , crack the eggs directly on the sauce (try not to break the yolk) – Cook covered for 5 – 10 minutes
  • Keep an eye on the pan so as not to overcook it as the liquid yolk adds so much to the dish

Serve with Fragrant Basmati or Jasmine rice!

A perfect mix of my native Alsace with a glass of crisp white wine & warm Middle eastern flavors

My favorite part is to break the yolk with bread and eat it with some butter & salt!

What’s your favorite food when feeling homesick ?

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One Comment Add yours

  1. That looks delicious! I love shakshuka too 🙂

    Like

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