We include zucchini in the title simply because we’ll make this dish to help use some of the plethora of summer squash that we get during the season. But, really, there are only two things you need to remember for making Shakshuka: spicy tomato sauce and eggs. As far as we can tell, everything else can be changed (even the spiciness, of course) to suit what you have on hand and what you like. With that in mind, we’ll show you what we did for a quick and easy lunch (it’ll also work for dinner, or even breakfast).
When we went to the Internet find out how to spell Shakshuka, we found that everyone and his fifth cousin twice removed has a recipe out there, so we almost didn’t write up this one. But, then we thought about all those people who find bags of zucchini left on their doorstep in the middle of the night, and figured that, if one or two see the idea of using summer squash in Shakshuka, and it helps reduce their courgette mountain, it’ll have been worth the effort to write up. If you’re one of those people, the entire Scratchin’ It staff is glad to have helped.
We’ll be making enough for one large serving in the photos, but the recipe below is doubled to serve two.
We really suggest looking in your refrigerator for small bits of greens, perhaps a couple of mushrooms, and whatever else you have on hand, and not trying to match our ingredient list. You might not have Preserved Lemon (they’re easy to make; just follow the link) or Harissa (also easy), which is a very spicy North African condiment. You can use some lemon juice and some sort of spicy pepper, instead.
Procedure in detail:
Cook onions. Heat the oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add cumin seeds, onion, and harissa, stirring to mix in the harissa paste. Continue cooking and stirring until onions are starting to turn soft, then stir in the garlic and cook for an additional minute.
Add squash and tomatoes. Stir in the squash, preserved lemon, and tomatoes, and reduce the heat to medium. Continue cooking and stirring occasionally until the squash is mostly soft and the tomatoes are breaking apart, about 5-8 minutes.
Add peas and season. Stir in peas (mainly for color) and olives and cook, stirring occasionally, until the peas are cooked through and everything is bubbling, about 3 minutes. Stir in smoked paprika. Taste the sauce and adjust seasoning as needed.
Add eggs. Make two small depressions on each side of the mixture and crack an egg into each. If desired, sprinkle a bit more smoked paprika on top of each egg for color. Reduce the heat to low, cover, and let the eggs poach for 5-7 minutes. The yolks should remain runny.
Serve. Sprinkle with freshly ground black pepper before serving.
Quite good. A bit spicy, but that’s tempered by the poached egg yolk; its added fat helps to cut the spiciness. We also like the addition of preserved lemons. They add lemon flavor, but, since they’re fermented, they add a lot more in the way of flavors. The other thing we like is that this is such a fast easy meal. Everything goes into one skillet, and, in about 15 minutes, you can be serving up dinner. Easy five stars.