Are you tired of boring breakfasts?

Sick of staring at a bowl of oats or dry toast?

Christ, how sad is your life? No offence, but that’s easily solvable. Just put butter on your toast or buy better cereal. Wow, you’ve really brought the mood down, imaginary sad person.

Guess I’m going to have to cheer you up with this amazing Moroccan breakfast recipe called Shakshuka!

You’re welcome.

I’d seen this meal loads of times on my travels through the world of the internet and not really given it a second thought. Sure, it looked alright, but I’ve never been a massive fan of tomatoes for breakfast.

It wasn’t until I started to wonder what people had for breakfast around the world that I took more notice.

At the time writing this, my only authentic idea of what people in different countries eat for breakfast is from living with my family in Tanzania. There, the choices were:

  • Popcorn
  • Heart shaped waffles
  • Mandazi (which had to be eaten pretty much straight away or you would chip a tooth)
  • More popcorn
  • Chips my eye (deep fried chips, cooked into an omelette and just all around amazing. I miss that)

or what is referred to as – but never defined – continental breakfast.

I really don’t understand the logic of calling something a continental breakfast when every country in that continent eats a different breakfast. Also, which continent? In Germany, the Noodle and I ate eggs, meat, cheese and bread. In France, I ate croissants, meat and cheese. In Cyprus, I ate everything that they put on the buffet, I went

In Germany, the Noodle and I ate eggs, meat, cheese and bread. In France, I ate croissants, meat and cheese. In Cyprus, I ate everything that they put on the buffet, I went

In France, I ate croissants, meat and cheese. In Cyprus, I ate everything that they put on the buffet, I went

In Cyprus, I ate everything that they put on the buffet, I went to town on that mother flipper. And meat and cheese.

Suffice it to say, if meat and cheese is available, this guy is getting involved.

Anyway… when I was looking through¬†what people ate for breakfast in different countries, I actually took the time to find out what Shakshuka is and I was thoroughly intrigued. I thought it was just tomatoes and egg, which sounds alright, I guess… but it’s not something I’d willingly inflict upon myself.

Good Lord, was I wrong. It’s chillies, onion, spices, tomato, peppers and eggs poached in the sauce. It’s served with something to dip with and it’s everything I’m looking for in a savoury breakfast. A spicy, tangy, eggy treat. Bonus! It’s easy as balls. Which means it’s really easy. I could have just said that, but where’s the dramatic flourish?

This is just my variation of the recipe, but it went down a treat at the office which, as I have mentioned before, is my own personal barometer of successful dinners.

I didn’t even care that it’s vegetarian. This is one of the few meals I’ve ever eaten and thought “meat would ruin this”

Ingredients:

About 3 Large Overripe Tomatoes (don’t use tinned tomatoes you lazy fiend. Buy tomatoes that are juuuuuust at the end of their lifespan, but before they’re a gooey mush)

3 Medium Eggs

Big ole’ Hunk of Bread (or a pitta bread if you’re normal)

Handful of Shallots (or a medium sweet onion)

2 Garlic Cloves (sounds like a lot, I know, but it turned out alright)

1 Red Pepper

Handful Baby Spinach

Half Tin of Chickpeas

1 Red Bird’s Eye Chilli

Teaspoon Smoked Paprika

Teaspoon Harissa

Half Teaspoon Crushed Cumin Seeds

Crushed Black Pepper

Sea Salt (to taste, I cooked everything without it and then added increments)

Teaspoon of Honey

2 Shots of Pomegranate Juice

Oil

Method

  1. Blend the onion/shallots, garlic, chilli and red pepper and fry at a mid-low heat
  2. Chop the tomato into chunks. I went with bisected quarters
  3. Stir in the the spices, honey and pomegranate juice
  4. Fry for another few minutes
  5. Throw the tomatoes in and roughly stir them into the sauce. I mean, do it like you’re mad at the tomatoes. Don’t pansy about with it, whack them with your spoon, if needs be
  6. Throw in the chickpeas and spinach
  7. Give it a taste and salt if necessary
  8. Let it bubble away at the lowest heat for about 10 minutes
  9. Make 3 wells in the mixture
  10. Crack one egg into each of the wells
  11. Put the lid on the pan and leave it to bubble for 2 minutes
  12. Check the eggs every 30 seconds, let the whites cook but keep the yolks runny. I don’t give a damn if you don’t like your yolks runny. Throw this dish away, if that’s the case. It’s runny yolks in a Shakshuka or get the Hell out
  13. As soon as the eggs are perfect, take it off the heat and get eating. DO NOT START TUCKING IN WITH A SPOON! Seriously, it hurts. Tear off a chunk of bread and get breaking those yolks.
  14. Wipe that tear away from your eye due to the sheer beauty of the whole thing
  15. Keep eating
  16. When the yolks set (as they will, it’s science) give it all a stir. There’s something about the way the tomato and yolks mix that is just wonderful

Slight confession…

I took mine into work and cooked the eggs in the microwave (by the way, you can microwave up some damn fine poached eggs). I was pretty much exactly the same from 9 onwards.

Make the wells

Crack the eggs in

Cover

Nuke for 2 minutes on high

Check every 30 seconds so they don’t overdo

Happy Shakshuka-ing… I guess?

 

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