Hello my fellow dum dums. Many of you, like me, are culinarily challenged. We love food, we want to cook up a storm and think we are just a worse looking Gordon Ramsay or something; but really, we aren’t. We suck at food just like we suck at almost everything else. But, no worries, I have decided to share with you all my idiot proof recipes and easy hacks for not dying of hunger.
Today I shall be sharing my recipie for Shakshuka, an amazing Middle eastern breakfast stew. It has all the goodies – eggs, sausages, vegetables and your slight incompetent-ness. It’s not necessarily an easy dish but if you’ve tried making simple stuff before and not burned down the house, you should be okay.
STUFF YOU NEED –
- 3 eggs
- 2 sausages (chicken or pork or which ever you like) (skip if you’re a vege-nazi)
- Oil (Any oil. As if you can notice a difference. Olive Oil if you’re feeling fancy. You can even use GHEE!)
- Some bottled tomato based sauce (BBQ sauce or Red Pasta sauce types)
- 1 tomato
- 1 medium sized onion
- Bell Peppers – Your favourite colours (Green is a bit pungent, red and yellow ones are milder)
- Any more vegetables you want – like baby corn, mushroom, spinach etc
- 4-5 garlic cloves (peeled, whole) Or just garlic paste
- Cheese – Any cheese you like. (Best is some feta or mozzarella. I used some cheap packaged Amul cheddar. Even normal cheese cubes or slices are okay)
- Black pepper
- Cumin (Jeera) powder
- Coriander (Dhania) powder
- Cinnamon Powder
- Chilly flakes (leftovers from your Dominos will do!)
[OR just a little Garam Masala, who cares?]
This is a very important step for novice cooks like us so that we don’t break any of our mom’s favourite pans or cutlery, when we get angry ‘cos we forgot something right in the middle of our cooking chaos! Or is that just me? Whatever, moving on…
- Collect all the above stuff.
- Cut Onions into cubes or strips, whatever you prefer or your undexterous little fingers can manage. Wipe off your tears. (Don’t touch your eyes with your fingers, you idiot)
- Cut up all the vegetables into cubes or strips (‘you idiot’. Just in case)
- Peel garlic cloves and bash them with something. (I use a spatula. Don’t use a knife like they show on TV, you muppet)
- Thaw sausages in the microwave or just leave them out for sometime. Once they are soft, slice them length wise into 2 strips. Then cut them breadthwise into two peices each. (Aah! Now you suddenly wish you hadn’t zoned out during maths class, eh?)
- Keep everything arranged around the gas preferably in groups of similar things. Eg vegetables, spices, implements etc.
WHAT TO DO
- Take 2-3 table spoons of oil (or ghee) in a slightly heated non-stick pan. (it’ll splatter if it’s too hot)
- Throw the cut up sausages into the oil.
- Stir them around till they’re browned and cooked (medium heat). If you can, just make sure they’re caramelized on all sides for a smokier flavour. (Yeah, i know you burned them. I did too. Just start over)
- Take out the sausages and keep them aside.
- Add a little more oil to the same pan and add the onion and garlic and saute for couple of minutes till they’re slightly brown (medium heat)
- Add a tablespoon of all the spices. Cumin powder, coriander powder, black pepper and chilly flakes. Put just a pinch of cinnamon powder, not too much. Stir everything together just to mix it in.
- Add all the vegetables. Stir fry for just a couple of minutes till they’re slightly cooked but still crunchy.
- Add the BBQ sauce or Tomato sauce till it just about covers all the vegetables. Not too much.
- Break the eggs and put them in the pan with some distance from each other.
- Add the cooked sausages.
- Add salt to taste (if required). The sauce may already have salt. So taste the sauce before adding salt.
- Do not break the yolks and do not stir.
- Break the cheese into small pieces and throw it around randomly. Do not stir.
- Reduce the heat to low (the minimum possible)
- Leave the stuff simmering for about 4-5 minutes.
- The egg white can be stirred in extremely gently into the sauce just to cook it slightly. Leave the yolks alone.
- If the egg yolks seem too raw for your taste, cover the pan for a couple of minutes but this will reduce the smokey flavour and soften everything. Best to leave the pan open for a few minutes extra instead.
- Switch off the gas and season it with freshly ground black pepper. Normal black pepper powder is okay too. Again check the sauce for salt and you can add just a touch on top if required.
(It’s a video, play it…)
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Amazing Shakshuka by yours truly!! Not authentic but my own version with sausages, bit of cheese and a tangy sauce. I wish to get a smokier flavour and a bit more punch the next time! Let me know if you want the recipe. It's really simple, I mean, obviously, if I can make it, probably a slightly keen baboon could do it too 😄 . . . #shakshuka #breakfast #sunday #eggs #sausage #chicken #healthy #food #yum #yummy #amazing #instagood #instafood #delish #cuisine #delicious #tasty #eat #hungry #foodpics #foodlove #foodgasm #nomnomnom #puneinstagrammers #foodblogger #foodblog #wanderdriveeat #restaurant #goodfood #grub
So that makes your simple homemade Shakshuka. You can serve it with toasted bread or butter toasted pav or brun, whatever you like. But if you really want it a bit fancy, you can serve it with heated Pita, Hummus and a simple salad on the side. This is not really authentic, but a quick way to make it at home.
Shakshuka is usually a breakfast dish but can be had as lunch or dinner because its really filling and hearty. You can add, subtract or replace whatever ingredient you want to suit your taste. You can just remove the sausages if you’re an Eggetarian. You can replace the sausages with shredded chicken or even sauteed prawns if you like; whatever you fancy.
Please let me know if you like this series and what all recipes you want me to to do. I am planning on many such simple recipes that are easy but pack a punch like awesome meaty sandwiches and burgers, super easy microwave recipes and even simple ‘gharelu’ techniques to make fancy coffees (cappuccino, espresso, middle-eastern coffee) etc.
Please let me know what you think about this recipe, if you’ve tried it on your own and your success or disaster (more likely) stories. Leave everything in the comments. And don’t forget to follow me on Facebook and Instagram.