The tomato egg recipe crosses the Mediterranean Sea and from Lazio and Campania we find it up to Lebanon, Tunisia, Algeria, Morocco and during the Ottoman Empire it arrived in Israel.
It is a very simple and equally popular dish, which in the North African version involves the use of spices and green chilli, of course eggs, tomato in sauce and in some variants peppers or other vegetables, such as potatoes.
The term shakshuka derives from the Berber word "mixture" while the Italian name "eggs in purgatory" refers to the classic iconography of souls (the eggs) wrapped in the red of the flames (the tomato).
As I have often written, it is a traditional dish and as such it has many variations, probably one for each family! I discovered them a few years ago, eaten during a lunch with Iranian and Afghan friends, who presented them as a large central single dish, from which everyone could draw with his piece of pita.
Here I propose a spicy and tasty recipe, but not too spicy, which over the years I have refined as a good balance between flavors.
Ingredients for 4
250 gr of peeled tomatoes. If you want to find out how to prepare them at home, you can take a look here
fot the Italian recipe.
1 teaspoon cumin powder
1 fresh green pepper
1 handful of parsley
3 cloves of garlic
salt, pepper, extra virgin olive oil
Chop the garlic and onion. Put them to brown in a pot (better in iron, if you have it or anyway with a thick bottom) and stir often. After 5 'minutes add the cumin and the sliced red pepper. Sauté a few more minutes, making sure that the spice does not burn. Add the tomatoes, salt slightly and cook for about 20 ', so that the tomatoes break up into pieces and most of the vegetation water evaporates.
When the sauce has thickened, with the help of a spoon, create 4 nests in the sauce, where you will lay the eggs (open as if to make them to the eye). Lightly salt each egg, cover with the lid and cook for a few minutes.
Now, you can leave them quite liquid, or prolong the cooking so that the red of the egg is more creamy. This at your convenience. Turn off the heat, sprinkle with pepper and plenty of coarsely chopped parsley.