About the Recipe
Huevos kon tomat is an easy, versatile, one-pan dish of eggs poached in a fresh tomato sauce, aromatic with paprika and cumin.
This popular dish, known as shakshouka throughout the Middle East and Israel, also appears in Turkish cuisine as menemen. Often bell peppers, cut into strips and chunks of spicy sausage, are tossed in the tomato sauce for a more substantial meal.
My preferred version is the Sephardic-Rhodesli recipe that includes oil-cured black olives, crumbled feta and handfuls of chopped parsley, adding a whole other dimension of flavour to the dish.
Be sure to serve it immediately in the pan straight to the table, with lots of warm pita bread to mop up the tasty sauce for any impromptu meal – be it breakfast or a light dinner.
For the tomato sauce: 5 tbsp olive oil
1 red onion, thinly sliced lengthways
2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced 1⁄2 tsp paprika 1⁄2 tsp cumin 2 cups ripe, peeled and chopped tomatoes or canned whole plum tomatoes, coarsely chopped
1 tbsp tomato paste 1 tsp sea salt 1 tsp sugar 6-8 eggs a handful of oil-cured black olives 1⁄2 cup cubed or crumbled feta cheese 2 tbsp roughly chopped flat-leaf parsley
For serving: warm pita bread
Make the tomato sauce: Heat the oil in a large frying pan over a medium-high heat. Cook the onion for 3-4 minutes, stirring frequently until softened. Add the garlic, paprika and cumin and stir for a further minute. Stir in the tomatoes, tomato paste, salt and sugar. Simmer for about 7 minutes over a low heat until thickened and well reduced. Taste and ensure you adjust the seasoning at this stage as the sauce cannot be stirred or seasoned once the eggs are in *.
Make shallow indentations in the surface of the sauce with a spoon or spatula. Then carefully crack the eggs directly into them, nestling each in the sauce. Stir the whites gently with a fork so they are thinly spread over the tomatoes. At this point scatter over the olives, cheese and parsley. Partly cover the pan with a lid and simmer over a low heat for 4-5 minutes. Cook until the eggs are just set but both the white and the yolks are still soft. Cover briefly with a lid if you prefer your eggs well done.
To serve: Serve hot in the same pan with warm pita bread.
Stella’s Hint: **The tomato sauce can be prepared ahead. Refrigerate until ready to use.
Twist on Tradition: ◊ To add a fiery bite to the sauce, stir in a teaspoon of Turkish red pepper flakes with the onion or 1⁄2 tsp of harissa paste.