I first ate shakshuka many years ago in Israel when my children were quite young. I had never even heard of the poached egg and tomato dish before. I remember that l liked it very much, and I remember that is was part of a very special evening. My family was in Israel because my husband was taking a summer sabbatical at the Weizmann Institute. We took weekend excursions around the entire small country and were visiting Eilat on this particular weekend. It was super hot, and we ate dinner directly on the beach, just feet away from the Red Sea. Between courses, I cooled off in the water and swam with a dolphin. The entire experience was quite memorable.
But I never ate Shakshuka again until a few months ago. It was my younger daughter Emily who reintroduced me to it. She’s in graduate school now, and my older daughter and I visited Emily for a girls weekend. We made shakshuka for dinner. (We got pedicures, went to a honey festival and visited a speakeasy too.) The shakshuka was so delicious, and it brought back such good memories and gave us wonderful new memories. At home, I played around with the ingredients a few times before I came up with this healthy version. It’s so simple to make and so tasty. It makes a perfect entrée for dinner or brunch, especially Mother’s Day brunch.
And if you’re looking for a collection of brunch recipes, try out this Smoked Salmon Frittata. Finally, if Mother’s Day brunch isn’t your thing, but you’d like to gift Mom a healthy living book (or put one on your wish list), check out Healthy Living Books for Mother’s Day.
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 large yellow onion, sliced
- 2 large bell peppers, sliced (any color, I prefer red and orange)
- 3 garlic cloves, chopped or crushed
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 11/2 teaspoons paprika
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 (14.5-ounce) can petite diced tomatoes, no salt added, undrained
- 12 fluid ounces vegetable juice
- 6 ounces baby spinach
- 4 ounces feta cheese (about 1 cup)
- 8 large eggs
- Using a large nonstick pan, heat the oil over medium heat. Sauté the onions and peppers until soft, about 8 minutes.
- Add the garlic, cumin, paprika and cayenne pepper and stir. Add the tomatoes and vegetable juice. Bring the contents to a boil. Decrease the heat, cover and simmer for about 8 minutes until thick. Stir occasionally.
- Add the spinach. Mix and allow the spinach to wilt, about 3 minutes. Add the feta cheese and stir.
- Using a spoon, make a well in the vegetables and sauce. Add a cracked egg into the well. Do the same with each egg.
- Cover and simmer until the eggs are cooked to your preference, about 4 minutes for runny eggs and 10 minutes for eggs cooked through.