Shakshuka with La Chinata! Poached eggs in a sweet, smokey sauce made of tomatoes, onions, peppers and subtly spiced with cumin & chilli.
Anyone that knows us and reads our blog will be well aware of how much we enjoy a good brunch! They almost always contain fresh eggs from Michelle’s chooks and this dish is no exception. Shakshuka is a dish originating in North Africa (Michelle’s original pronunciation of this dish is hilarious – Babushka anyone?). Alongside the vegetables we used a selection of fresh herbs and spices that we like and served ours with a spoon of thick Greek yoghurt. Feel free to experiment using the fresh herbs and spices that you prefer to cook with. We also added crumbly Lancashire cheese, but this dish also works well with feta; you could add preserved lemons; make it what you wish and if you fancy a slice of crusty bread to dip into the egg don’t let us stop you.
We both love spice and a look in my spice drawer will confirm that, however if pushed to pick the spice that I use more than any other it would be smoked paprika, it goes in a lot of dishes I cook and Michelle is no different. We have always used La Chinata smoked paprika, and are never without both the sweet and hot varieties. Their paprika flakes are a new addition to our spice rack and perfect to add a hit of smokiness to a dish, we like to use it in much the same way you would a crack of black pepper to finish a dish.
Fresh eggs poached in a smokey sauce of tomato, onion and peppers and aubergine gently spiced with cumin and chilli.
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 onion sliced
- 2 peppers sliced
- 1/2 aubergine cubed
- 4-5 cloves garlic crushed
- 2 tsp hot smoked paprika
- 2 tsp ground cumin
- 400 g tin chopped tomatoes
- 200 ml water
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 tsp sugar
- 4 eggs
- black pepper
- 1.5 tsp salt
- 80 g lancashire cheese or other crumbly cheese such as feta, wensleydale
- spinkle of La Chinata Smoked Paprika Flakes
- 1 tbsp chopped flat leaf parsley
- 1 tbsp chopped coriander leaf
Place the olive oil in a large non stick frying pan over a medium heat, add the onion and peppers and saute for 5 minutes until starting to soften. Add in the garlic and aubergine and continue to fry for the further minute.
Add the smoked paprika and cumin to the vegetables and continue to cook for a few minutes over a medium heat until the vegetables have become soft.
Add the tinned tomatoes along with the water, bayleaves, salt and sugar, lower the heat and simmer for 20 minutes. You want a thick consistency but do not dry out.
Split the mixture between 4 small pans, make a small well in the middle and crack an egg into each pan and season with black pepper. With the heat on low, cover each pan and cook for 10-12 minutes until the egg is cooked through.
Sprinkle over the crumbled cheese, some paprika flakes and fresh herbs. Serve immediately.
Feel free to experiment and use whatever herbs and spices you have to hand and that you enjoy.