Shakshuka with aubergine

Shakshuka with aubergine – a delicious brunch or supper recipe

My shakshuka with aubergine is a slight twist on the classic dish made with eggs poached in a spicy tomato sauce. It is popular across many countries in the Middle East and North Africa. Shakshuka makes a great brunch recipe, but it also works well as a lunch or weeknight supper dish. I prefer to make the tomato sauce in advance, as it does take a bit of time. Once you’ve done this, it only takes about 10 minutes to poach the eggs. A much more relaxed way of doing brunch! Serve with some crusty bread to mop up your egg yolks and all the tasty juices.

Shakshuka with aubergine – a twist on the classic

The classic shakshuka involves a tomato sauce with onions, peppers, garlic, chilli and other spices. However, there are many variations depending on personal preference and regional variations. Alternative additions include potato, broad beans, artichoke hearts, cheeses or even spicy sausage. I sourced this recipe from The Guardian – How to make the perfect… shakshuka article. It gives a great rundown of some alternative recipes and their pros and cons. My version is shakshuka with aubergine which does away with the peppers and replaces them with, well, aubergine. This is mainly because Mr KitchenBlurb is not a great fan of peppers, though he is made to eat them on a fairly regular basis. I would be more than happy with either.

The tomato sauce is the time-consuming bit, but it’s pretty simple to make. The only tricky bit in this recipe is cooking the eggs just right. It’s easy to overcook them, and no right-thinking person wants hard poached eggs. In my book, you’re better off with a runny yolk and a slightly-too-soft white, than an overdone egg yolk. But you know how you like your eggs!

Shakshuka with aubergine
Shakshuka with aubergine served with crusty white bread

 

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Baked stuffed peppers - with mushrooms, feta and sun-dried tomatoes

Baked stuffed peppers – with mushroom, feta and sun-dried tomato

This tasty vegetarian recipe for baked stuffed peppers is very easy to prepare. I adapted it from a Hairy Bikers recipe in their first Hairy Dieters book. Although there are a few different ingredients, you only need to do a bit of chopping and a few minutes of frying. After that you just pop the peppers in the oven and let them cook away – easy peasy!

 

Baked stuffed peppers – with mushroom, feta and sun-dried tomato

This recipe for stuffed peppers is delicious, healthy and surprisingly simple. It delivers a fantastic combination of flavours and textures. The sweet peppers melt in your mouth. The mushrooms are juicy and earthy. The feta is comfortingly creamy and tangy. The sun-dried tomatoes add piquancy, and the chilli flakes give you a welcome, warming kick. The crispy breadcrumb topping and the toasted hazelnuts add a delightful crunch.

Vegetarians and non-veggies will love you for this one. After all the indulgence of Christmas and New Year, it’s packed full of good things but feels like a treat. A great healthy recipe for January!

 

 

No-fuss breadcrumbs

Breadcrumbs come in very handy in a variety of recipes, such as stuffings or meatballs. However, making small amounts of breadcrumbs is quite faffy, so I tend to make a batch of breadcrumbs from a whole loaf, and freeze the leftovers. They defrost really quickly, and you can freeze them in a single large bag. Just break off a portion of the frozen breadcrumbs when you need them – it crumbles off easily. I don’t often have a lot of white bread kicking around at home, but it’s worth baking a white loaf when I’m making a batch of breadcrumbs. This saves me from random shop-bought white bread, which always seems weirdly chewy and lasts a suspiciously long time before it goes mouldy!