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One classic shakshuka recipe, and one with a spring spin!

It brings a smile to my face to wave goodbye to the cold, dreary winter months, and be welcomed by the budding spring. Entering this new season, I find my body craving lighter dishes to match the lighter days we find ourselves in. 

Here, I bring you two versatile versions of Shakshuka, one closer to the original North African delight, and the other a bright green dish. The beauty of both is that they can be whipped up almost entirely from store cupboard ingredients. Both work either as a satisfying brunch or lighter dinner. 

Shakshuka ingredients:

One large onion (either green or red works fine)

One clove of garlic 

One bell pepper (orange or red) 

Half a tsp chilli flakes (optional)

One tsp cumin

One tsp paprika 

One 400g tin of tomatoes

Four large free-range eggs 

Optional ingredients:

Greek yoghurt and flatbreads to serve 

It’s nice to add any fresh herbs you have lying around - coriander is my favourite, but basil, mint, parsley all work well too.

Method:

  1. Dice the onion, garlic, and pepper.
  2. Heat oil in a large frying pan, then throw in all three ingredients from step one over medium heat for about 10 minutes until softened and fragrant. 
  3. Add the spices; some salt and pepper; and chilli if you like a little heat. 
  4. Add the tinned tomatoes and break them up to make a smoother sauce.
  5. Let it bubble for about three to five minutes over a medium heat.
  6. Make four little wells/holes in the sauce then crack each egg into these and try to cover with some of the sauce. 
  7. Cover the pan with a lid (I just use a big plate or another large frying pan) and let the eggs poach for around five minutes. 
  8. Chop any herbs of your choice and sprinkle over the bubbling mixture. 
  9. Serve out of the frying pan with a side of yoghurt or tzatziki, flatbreads and extra herbs.

The following version requires similar ingredients and actually reminds me a little of a makeshift saag curry.

Green shakshuka ingredients: 

One large onion (either green or red works fine)

One clove of garlic 

400g spinach 

Half a tsp chilli flakes (optional)

One tsp cumin

One tsp ground coriander 

150g of Greek yoghurt 

One lemon

Four large free-range eggs 

Feta

Method:

  1. Dice the onion and garlic.
  2. Heat oil in a large frying pan, then throw in the above over a medium heat for about 10 minutes till softened and fragrant.
  3. Add the spices; some salt and pepper; and chilli if you like a little spice.
  4. Add the spinach and stir until wilted.
  5. Pop the mixture into a blender, adding the juice of the lemon then whizz up into a puree/sauce.
  6. Pour the sauce back into the frying pan and stir through the yogurt, then bring to a medium heat.
  7. Once warmed through make four little wells/holes to crack the eggs into.
  8. Cover the pan with a lid (I just use a big plate or another large frying pan) and let the eggs poach for around five minutes.
  9. Once done sprinkle over any fresh herbs and some crumbled feta, serve with flatbreads.


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