The Art Of Cooking ~ Shakshuka

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Many dishes are unavoidable in the Middle East, and yet every country has its own version.
One of those dishes is Shakshuka!
A savory tomato sauce with an egg cooked on top of it, and it tastes great at any moment of the day.

Because first of all, it is such an old dish which can be found all over North Africa and the Middle East, and secondly,  there are so many different ways to make it.
I like to add eggplant, simply because I love it, and yet at the same time, the eggplant helps to make the Shakshuka a bit more savory.
But please feel free to try out different ingredients/toppings and spices when you are making your own Shakshuka!

Ingredients:
1 Eggplant
Eggs
Large onion
Garlic
1 Cayenne pepper
1 Red paprika
2 Canned diced tomatoes
Olive oil (for cooking)
Salt
Pepper
Paprika powder
Cumin powder
Turmeric Powder
Feta cheese or any good alternative white cheese for topping
Fresh parsley

Cooking Shakshuka:
First of all begin with dicing of the eggplant into small chunks, then cook them with oil in a deep skillet until golden brown.
Meanwhile, dice the onion/garlic/paprika and cayenne pepper (remove the seeds if you do not like it too spicy).
When the eggplant is soft and cooked through – make sure there is enough oil in the skillet – add the onions and cook the mixture until translucent, at this moment you can add the garlic, the paprika, and the cayenne.
By now you can add the seasoning, a pinch of salt and pepper, a teaspoon of paprika, a teaspoon of turmeric, and cumin (you can add a pinch of dried chili or ground cayenne pepper if you like it extra spicy!).
When all the seasoning is mixed well with the vegetables add the canned diced tomatoes and let it simmer for 15 minutes. You can add a splash of water when the mixture becomes too dry.
By this time when the tomato mixture is cooking, the sauce becomes thicker; at this moment one should make holes in the sauce for the eggs.

An easy way to place the egg into the Shakshuka is by cracking the egg into a bowl first.
So, when all the eggs are on top of the sauce put a lid on, let it simmers for a couple of minutes until the eggs are cooked to your liking.
Please note, when you turn off the fire let the eggs cook a bit longer in the hot tomato sauce before served.
Garnish with fresh parsley, crumbled feta cheese, and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.
Eat with any type of bread, even with toasted bread, that is as long as you can soak up all that sauce!

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