I don’t really know if anyone has ever dealt with ‘emergency’ brunches, but I deal with them all the time. You see, my best friend lives about 10 minutes away from me. So, while I keep myself pretty safe from unplanned get-togethers on workdays (by escaping to the office), weekends are more challenging. Because even if we don’t make any plans or specifically make plans to not meet… Somehow, we still almost always end up spending late mornings and early afternoons together.
It may sound like I’m complaining, but I really am not. In fact, I don’t think many things in life can beat sharing morning coffee and a conversation where you don’t have to watch what you’re saying and where topics range from aliens to world domination plans. In my opinion, however, those conversations are even better if there’s food present. This means that I’m often presented with a challenge of throwing together a last-minute Keto dish that should be satisfying, but, at the same time, light, as neither of us are fans of heavy breakfasts. And, while on some days it can be as simple as Keto toast with some spread and cheese… from time to time you just want something more.
This is where this amazing dish called ‘Shakshuka’ comes in handy. This traditional North African and Mediterranean dish dates all the way back to the Ottoman Empire. I guess 13th century Turks also had their friends drop in on them all the time. Anyways, kudos to them for making my life easier 800 years later.
This amount of time was sufficient for many different countries and regions to put their twist on Shakshuka, so you will encounter many variations of this dish. Who knows, maybe somewhere along the way I’ll even share one of them with you. As for today, we’ll be cooking the most widely-known version of Shakshuka – spicy and flavorful eggs poached in tomato sauce. So, hop aboard this magic carpet, because we’re going for a ride!
Right, let’s talk ingredients. You’ll need eggs, tinned tomatoes or tomato paste, red bell pepper and a bunch of spices. Be careful to read the label when buying canned tomatoes to ensure there are no hidden carbs or added sugars. You can also opt for using a low-carb marinara sauce. The original recipe includes an onion, but we’re going to skip it to keep the dish as low-carb as possible. However, feel free to add it, if you’re not that concerned about your carb count. Now that this is out of the way… let’s get to work!
- Large stainless steel pan
- 6 eggs
- 1 can tomatoes/tomato paste bonus points if fire-roasted
- 1 red bell pepper
- 1 cloves garlic minced
- 3 oz feta cheese crumbled
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp smoked paprika or sweet
- 1/2 tsp cayenne optional
- 2 tbsp fresh parsley or cilantro chopped
- salt, pepper to taste
- 2 tbso olive oil
- Place a pan over medium heat and heat up olive oil. Add chopped red bell pepper and cook until very soft.
- Add minced garlic and sauté for a minute. Add spices and give everything a good stir.
- Add tinned tomatoes or tomato paste, season with salt and pepper, then bring to simmer. If using tomatoes, break them into smaller pieces with a spatula and let the mixture thicken.
- Using a spatula, make a small well in the tomato sauce, then crack an egg into the well. Repeat the process for the remaining eggs. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
- Reduce the heat to low and top your Shakshuka with crumbled feta, before covering the pan with a lid and cooking for another 8-10 minutes, or until the eggs are done to your liking.
- Remove the pan from the heat. Garnish the dish with freshly chopped parsley or cilantro and serve immediately. Bonus points for serving Keto toast on the side.