This Middle Eastern dish not only surprises with a delightful combination of flavors and a lovely presentation, but is also made with wholesome ingredients that readily share their medicinal properties. Tomatoes, due to their nutritional richness, have a strong preventative value, particularly in lowering the risk of heart disease, osteoporosis, or inflammation. Red bell peppers are great for relieving inflammation and promoting eye health, while parsley's phenols, flavonoids, and essential oils offer anti-inflammatory, antiviral, and antioxidant benefits. Eggs - poached in a thick tomato sauce - are a source of a good protein and a handful of nutrients, such as selenium and vitamins A, B, D, among others.
- In a large cast iron skillet on medium heat, saute the onions and garlic until translucent.(3 minutes)
- Add the tomatoes, bell peppers, tomato paste, sugar, and all spices. Cook until the veggies soften and the sauce thickens a little bit.(10 minutes)
- With a large spoon, make six wells spacing them out so they don't touch. Then gently crack an egg into each of the wells.(3 minutes)
- Lower the heat to low, cover the skillet, and cook without stirring until the whites are just set and the yolk is still runny. If you prefer a more solid yolk, then continue cooking for a few more minutes until it sets.(15 minutes)
- Take off the heat. Garnish with fresh parsley and enjoy immediately!
In the Middle East, it is common to serve shakshuka for breakfast along with pita bread. However, for a more filling lunch or dinner meal, it can be paired with brown rice, quinoa, amaranth, millet, or other nutritious grains.