My go-to on a busy weeknight is always breakfast for dinner. There’s not much else that’s as simple and satisfying than fried eggs, hashbrowns, and bacon. But that’s not necessarily the healthiest meal to end the day with. I’ve been completely obsessed with middle eastern food lately so I decided to put a spicy spin on our usual Monday night meal. Shakshuka is typically served for breakfast in Israel and is a great way to start the day with a kick. Eggs are baked in a spicy tomato sauce flavored with cumin and turmeric and then scooped up with warm pitas. My version is a little more on the hearty side and includes sauteed cauliflower, egg plant, and serrano peppers simmered in a rich sauce of San Marzano tomatoes with a touch of feta. What Max and I enjoyed most about this meal was how fun it was to eat. We simply plopped the skillet onto our coffee table and dug in while watching the new X-Men. Monday nights don’t get much better than that!
Shakshuka with Eggplant and Cauliflower
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 cup of diced cauliflower florets
- 1 small eggplant, diced
- 1 onion, diced
- 2 serrano peppers, diced
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
- 1 teaspoon garlic
- 1 28 oz can crushed San Marzano tomatoes
- 4 oz feta
- 4-6 free range organic eggs
- salt and pepper, to taste
- warm pitas for serving
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Heat a large, cast-iron skillet over medium heat. Add 3 tablespoons of olive oil. Once the oil is shimmering, add eggplant, cauliflower, and onion. Saute for about 10 minutes, or until veggies are softened and the onion is transluscent. Add the diced pepper, cumin, and turmeric. Saute for 5 more minutes. Add garlic and stir.
2. Add the tomatoes to the veggie mixture and bring to a simmer. Simmer for 10 minutes. Stir in half of the feta. Taste the sauce and season accordingly. Crack each egg into individual bowls. Use the back of a wooden spoon to make a slight indentation in the sauce for each of the eggs. Carefully slide each egg into place. Once all of the eggs are added, carefully place the skillet onto the middle rack of the oven. Bake the eggs for 8-12 minutes, or until the whites are set and the yolks are firm.
3. Remove the skillet from the oven and sprinkle the remaining feta on top. Garnish with parsley. Serve with warm pitas.
The sauteed eggplant and cauliflower spiced with cumin and turmeric provide the foundation for the spicy tomato sauce.
The hearty tomato sauce is ready for eggs.
Breakfast for dinner will never be the same!
When I was a little kid, I used to hate breakfast. I would always argue with my parents when they would make me eat cereal before school. Well, I still hate cereal, but I love breakfast. It has quickly turned into my favorite meal of the day. I love making myself a really special breakfast on the weekends. It always feels like such a treat to eat eggs instead of a cold yogurt. I first saw this recipe in Ina Garten’s Barefoot in Paris when I was in high school and I’ve been tweaking it for years. By the time I was in college, I had perfected it. This dish feels so luxurious and the presentation is so beautiful. It would be perfect to serve guests at an Easter brunch. Best of all, it’s so simple to prepare. The first time you make it, you’ll be sad you’ve gone all of these years without it. The eggs taste so rich from the small amounts of cream and butter, you’ll be surprised at how little you actually need. This dish is also easily customizable. Feel free to use whichever seasoning and cheese pairing you like. I’ve made it with Lawry’s seasoning salt and cheddar cheese, which was amazing. I’m partial to the Lake Shore Drive Seasoning from the Spice House in Chicago. It is by far the best seasoning blend I’ve ever had in my life (this is not a paid advertisement from The Spice House. I’m just obsessed with them and they don’t even know I exist). You can buy it here. The most important thing to keep in mind about this recipe is that the timing is very important. I’ve overcooked my eggs far too many times than I’d like to admit. If you follow this recipe closely, it will turn out beautifully!
Herb Broiled Eggs
- 2 eggs, the fresher the better
- 2 T heavy cream
- 1 T butter 1/4 t of your favorite seasoning blend
- 2 T of your favorite cheese
- toast, for dipping
- salt and pepper, to taste
- Special equipment A small, shallow baking dish, such as a gratin dish.
1. Preheat broiler to a medium heat. I set mine at 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Pour cream and seasoning into the baking dish. Then cube butter and scatter in the dish, as pictured above.
2. Carefully crack the 2 eggs without breaking the yolk, and place in a small bowl near the oven.
3. Put the dish with the cream and butter in the broiler for 3 minutes, or until bubbly. Put the bread in the toaster.
4. Once the cream and butter are visibly bubbly, carefully slide the eggs into the dish. Do not break the yolk! Broil for 2 minutes, or until the whites are just set, as pictured below.
5. Sprinkle cheese on top and broil for another minute. Carefully remove the dish from the broiler and serve with a towel or pot holder underneath. Serve with toast and enjoy your weekend!
You want the cream and butter to be bubbly and the whites to be firm before you add the cheese.