It was my hubby’s birthday yesterday so I cooked some of his favorite things, one of it being this Shakshuka with Chickpea and Feta. My hubby is really into spicy food, he expects everything to be spicy. I think he forgets that every dish is not Indian. This Shakshuka has spice but it’s not meant to be a hot spicy dish like we so typically cook here in SA.
Shakshuka is an Israeli/Middle Eastern dish consisting of poached eggs and a hearty sauce made with tomatoes. You can spice it up with spices that are commonly used for his dish, papriks, cayenne pepper, nutmeg, cumin. Most people add their own little twist to the dish. We have a very similar sort of dish that we make in our Indian homes, called Egg Chutney. It is of course, spicy and a little more simple in terms of spices.
I added some chickpea and feta to my Shakshuka, some days I just make a tomato sauce and add the eggs. I had all the ingredients and it was a special occassion so I wanted to make it a little more fancy. It’s great to have some pita bread to mop up all that saucy goodness. You can eat with any bread you choose really.
If you want to make this Shakshuka with Chickpea and Feta ahead of time, you can make the tomato sauce and add the eggs in later. Cooking the eggs with the sauce won’t work and you will end up with hard, overcooked eggs.
Fresh or canned tomatoes can be used. Seeing I am not frequenting the shops as much with lockdown I have stocked up on canned tomatoes. I have enough for a few meals so I can avoid going to the shops. So it’s what I used for my dish. If it were normal times I would settle for fresh tomatoes.
The Feta will add a little more tanginess to the sauce. If you prefer not to use it that’s ok. I added a pinch of sugar to my sauce because canned tomatoes can be a little on the acidic side. You can adjust the amount you use accordingly. You an also add some fresh coriander or parsley to this dish.
Although I cover my pan when I add the eggs, you can also pop it into the oven at this stage. The stovetop works well for me but for some it may not so you can finish cooking the eggs in the oven. You can also add up to six eggs to the sauce, I only added four. The chickpea made it a rather filling meal so I didn’t need too many eggs.
Shakshuka with Chickpeas and Feta
- 1 x 400 gram canned tomatoes
- 1 x 420 gram canned chickpeas
- 1/2 cup passata
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 1 onion finely chopped
- 1/2 green bell pepper seeded and thinly sliced
- 3 large cloves garlic minced
- 1 tsp paprika
- 2 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp chilli powder
- 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
- 1/2 tsp sugar (only if required)
- 4-6 eggs
- 1/3 cup crumbled feta (optional)
- Add oil, onion and green pepper to a large pan. Cook until soft, about 10 minutes
- Add garlic and cook for 1 minute
- Mix in the spices, cumin, coriander, cayenne pepper, paprika, chilli powder and cook for 2 minutes. Add a few drops of water if required
- Add the canned tomatoes and passata. Season with salt. Add a pinch of sugar as required. Simmer on low heat until the tomatoes are cooked and thickened
- Mix in the chickpeas and cook for 5 minutes
- Make little wells in the sauce and add the eggs. Sprinkle the feta over the sauce and cover the pan and cook until eggs are cooked, according to your preference
- Garnish with parsley
- You can add more eggs if you prefer
- The chickpeas can be omitted as most Shakshuka consists of just tomato sauce and eggs
- You can add some sugar if the tomatoes are too acidic