Besides being exceptionally entertaining to say, Shakshouka is a simple and homey meal. It can be found in most cafes, breakfast places, and sometimes even dedicated shakshuka spots everywhere in Israel. Equally popular as a Saturday brunch or a breakfast outdoors as a high energy meal before taking down camp. It’s usually served in it’s pan with a bread basket companion. This dish is basically a tomato sauce with eggs easy-over eggs atop. Definitely one of the best “pantry raid”, “one pot meal”, AND “leftover reviver” I’ve ever known. On those lazy nights I always remember my dad (the resident cook in my house growing up) taking stock of the fridge and somehow managing to whip up an always delicious shakshouka that left the whole family satisfied.
One of the many wonderful qualities of this dish is it’s versatility. The beauty of it, in my eyes, is the fact that you can turn out a great shakshouka just with what you have on hand. A great place to use up that extra bit of pasta sauce, the last half of the tomato paste from the can, extra veggies that managed to sneak away to the back of the drawer and aren’t looking so fresh.
In this version of shakshouka we chose it as our “brunch” on a mini picnic to the Ben Shemen forest. Easy to make, even outside, minimal prep time, and it turned out excellently on the small burner we had to cook on.
Here’s how we made it, but really, no shakshouka I’ve never managed to recreate a shakshuka.
Click to read the recipe!
I’d first like to thank Amiee and Gordon for inviting me to contribute to their food blog! I’m so happy to try to add to Gordon and Amiee’s almost sick amount of food knowledge. As previously mentioned in Amiee’s post below, I’ll be conducting most of my foodie-blogging where I currently live in Tel Aviv, sharing some Israeli delicacies.
I’ll start by recounting my most recent journey to the open air market of Tel Aviv. Oh sweet shuk hacarmel… it seems like every week I have a new reason to fall in love with this produce heaven. Beckoning shoppers with it’s soundtrack of stall workers yells, smells of freshly bundled herbs, and the overwhelming sight of mass quantities of produce, the shuk has something for everyone. With a wide array of goods, the shuk is the place to find bargain kitchen supplies, fish, cheeses, knock off clothing, cosmetics, bulk candy, freshly baked breads, spices, toys, or even electronics.
I go to the shuk primarily for the superabundance of fresh fruit and veggies at low prices. Admittedly I am somewhat of a produce snob. The shuk offers choices in produce, which is a nice break from the almost anemic selection to be found at most supermarkets. Going from basta to basta (stall) it is apparent what is in season by the almost overflowing pomegranates and piles of dates. To me, this is the mecca for produce and the epitome of freshness. To me it is the fresh and preservative-free products, which abound here, that make the food in Israel exceptionally excellent.
To me, the best Israeli food is simple with few components, no need to over-salt or over-pepper, just a bit of seasoning to highlight the already flavorful ingredients. That’s why for my initial post to this glorious new blog I am going to put up a simple but staple Israeli food, the chopped salad.