When I’m in Israel, I make it a priority to have breakfast at least once at Benedict, a restaurant known to have the best breakfast in the country — or should I even say, the world. What’s so amazing about Benedict is not only its extensive list of delicious food, but most of all the fact that it serves breakfast ALL DAY LONG. Pancakes for lunch, anyone? Although everything on the menu is unbelievably good, if I had to pick a favorite it has to be their shakshuka — a traditional Middle Eastern dish where eggs are cooked until perfection in a spiced tomato sauce. There are millions of ways to make shakshuka, ranging from adding bell peppers and hot peppers to the tomato sauce. Whatever way it’s cooked I’m all in.
In Israel you’ll find dishes inspired by the four corners of the globe, as it is truly a melting pot of cultures. Shakshuka is believed to have originated in Algeria or Tunisia, and made its way from their to Israel. In most countries shakshuka is served as a breakfast dish, but in Israel, people even eat it for dinner, especially during the winter months when warm hearty food is all we crave. Shakshuka is meant to be eaten next to warm pita bread, so that you can soak up every last drop off the tomato sauce. The weather is starting to finally cool down a bit here in Switzerland, so I decided to put together a shakshuka for Jon and I on a rainy weeknight. It’s the easiest thing ever to cook — it literally takes 35 minutes from start to finish — and is the perfect dish to share.
If eating eggs for dinner is not your thing, try whipping this up for brunch when you have friends over. And if you’re in Israel this summer or any time soon, make sure to stop by at Benedict for some of the best breakfast food you’ll ever have, and order one of their shakshukas, served with warm pita bread, tahini and eggplant spread. After that, you’ll surely want to start making your own shakshuka at home!
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- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 medium onion, diced
- ½ teaspoon mild paprika
- ½ teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 red bell pepper, deseeded and diced
- 1 garlic clove, diced
- 400g canned crushed tomatoes
- ½ teaspoon salt or more
- Black pepper, to taste
- 4 eggs
- ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
- Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Fry the onion with the paprika and cumin for 5 minutes until fragrant. Add the diced bell pepper and fry for 5 minutes until softened. Add the garlic and fry for 1 more minute.
- Add the crushed tomatoes, salt and pepper. Reduce heat to low and let simmer for 15 minutes until sauce thickens. Taste and adjust seasoning if needed.
- Crack the four eggs over the tomato sauce, leaving some space between each egg. Cover and let simmer for 15 minutes until the eggs are fully cooked. The whites should be cooked through.
- Top with chopped parsley and a bit more paprika. Serve immediately.
Serve the shakshuka with warm pita bread and this classic israeli salad on the side
How did your shakshuka come out? Share photos of your recipe on Instagram with the hashtag #savormania