How loosely can we use the term ‘shakshuka’? For the sake of naming, brunch, and simple deliciousness… I’m going to say we can be loose, very loose.
Shakshuka, typically and traditionally, is a common Israeli dish that involves simmering eggs in a brothy nest of stewed tomatoes and peppers. The eggs bake in the spiced tomatoes and, served with warm pita, makes for a deeply heart satisfying breakfast.
My shakshuka dish is hardly the traditional bright red, and is clearly sprinkled with more roasted corn than salty feta cheese. I thought we’d simmer eggs in a brightly flavored green sauce made of tomatillos, topped with sweet toasted corn and salty cotija cheese. It’s a curtsey to all that is good about spicy shakshuka, a curtsey with a shimey shake, served with toasted corn tortillas instead of pita… just as good for dinner as it is for brunch.
The book is out on March 21st. Just in time for all of our Spring Brunch endeavours… and you know there are many of those in our future!
AND… I’m coming to see you!
I’ll be hopping around signing books, doing cooking demonstrations, and hosting brunch in the few weeks after Over Easy hits the shelves. I hope you’ll come out and see me! These are the dates that are taking shape to start, and we’ll add cities to this list throughout the spring and summer.
Come say hi, will you? I’m hoping for a hug and a Bloody Mary!
More details and dates can be found, and will be updated- HERE.
Let’s get to the shakshuka.
I can vouch for this dish being a most excellent breakfast, a stellar brunch, and really… a great dinner served with cilantro rice. If you’re counting, I’ve eaten it thrice, for every meal except dessert.
You’ll need a handful of eggs (large-handed handful), onions and garlic, cheese and cilantro, corn and seasoning.
I used canned tomatillos as the base for this recipe because I wanted the tomatillos to break down quickly and easily. If you use fresh tomatillos, husk the little beauties and cook down for a good long while until they’re softened supreme.
I understand if you’re feeling a bit baffled by the tomatillo.
A tomatillo looks like a small, husked green tomato. They’re common in Mexican and Central-American cooking, often made into perfectly bright and spiced green salsa. Think of tomatillos as living in the space between a green tomato and pepper.
In this iteration, canned tomatillos are cooked down into a warm, chunky, almost-salsa that we’ll nestle eggs into to bake.
The tomatillos are bright in taste. We’ll add some grounding spices to root the mixture.
Cumin, black pepper, onion and garlic powder. Salt, too.
We’ll crack eggs into the warm tomatillo mixture and set the whole dish to bake in the oven.
The sauce will bubble and thicken as the eggs cook through. The oven is where things like this go to get just thaaat much more delicious.
While the shakshuka bakes, we have the privilege of charring corn over a gas stove. Charred corn is tastier corn. Sweet and toasty. Serve warm with toasted tortillas, coffee and bloody mary cocktails!
Tomatillo Shakshuka with Charred Corn
Prep time: 20 minutes Cook time: 30 minutes
1/2 cup diced yellow onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon onion powder
sea salt and fresh cracked black pepper
juice of 1 lime
1 28-ounce can whole tomatillos, mostly drained
5 large eggs
small handful coarsely chopped fresh cilantro
1/2 cup cotija cheese (or you could use feta cheese)
2 ears fresh corn, husked and charred over an open stovetop
Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat oven t o 375 degrees F.
In a large skillet over medium heat, warm oil. Add the onions and cook until translucent and beginning to brown, about 6 to 8 minutes. Add the garlic and saute for 2 minutes more. Add the tomatillos with 1/4 cup of the juice from the can. Break up the tomatillos with the back of a spoon. Add the cumin, garlic, onion, salt, pepper, and lime juice.
Reduce heat to low and simmer for 5 minutes.
Transfer the mixture to an oven proof baking dish if your skillet isn’t oven-proof (or you want to go with something for fancy). Crack eggs into the mixture, just a few inches apart. Place in the oven and bake until the egg whites are cooked through and the yolks begin to solidify, about 25 to 30 minutes.
While the dish bakes, husk the corn and char the corn over the gas flame on the stovetop. Carefully cut the charred corn from the cob.
When the eggs have baked to your liking, remove from the oven, drizzle with corn, fresh cilantro, cheese, and more salt and pepper if you’d like. Serve warm.
Photos with Jon Melendez