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August 17, 2021
Courtesy Joan Knows BestCourtesy Joan Knows Best


  • 4red bell peppers
  • 1medium eggplant
  • 2tablespoons olive oil (about)
  • 5cloves garlic, chopped
  • 12medium tomatoes, roughly chopped
  • 1tablespoon smoked Spanish paprika
  • 2teaspoons salt, or to taste
  • ½teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, or to taste
  • 1tablespoon sugar, or to taste
  • 1bunch cilantro or parsley, chopped
  • 4large eggs
  • Crumbled Bulgarian feta cheese, for garnish (optional)
  • 3sausages (plant-based), sliced in rounds (optional)
Yield: 6 servings


  • Step 1

    Preheat the oven to 450 degrees and line a jelly roll pan with parchment paper. Cook the peppers and the eggplant, pricking them first with a fork, turning occasionally with tongs, until slightly soft and blackened, about 20 minutes. You can also grill the vegetables, turning every 5 to 7 minutes, until they are very soft, about 20 minutes. Do not cook them until they are completely soft, though, as they will finish cooking in the shakshuka. Set aside to cool in a plastic bag for about a half hour, then remove the stem and seeds, peel, cut the peppers roughly into 1/2-inch squares, and just chop the eggplant.

  • Step 2

    Heat the oil in a wide, heavy-bottomed pot over medium-high heat. Add the peppers and fry until warmed through, about 3 minutes, then add the sausage, if using, and garlic and cook for 6 to 7 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the tomatoes and simmer, uncovered, over medium-low heat for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until the juices are reduced.

  • Step 3

    When the mixture is thickened, add the smoked paprika, salt, pepper, sugar, eggplant, and all but about 3 tablespoons of the cilantro. Stir to combine. Adjust seasonings to taste, especially the sugar, and add a little water if the mixture is too thick.

  • Step 4

    With the back of a large spoon, make 4 shallow wells in the shakshuka. Gently crack the eggs into the wells, cover the pot and poach over medium-low heat for about 5 to 10 minutes, until the egg whites are set. Serve sprinkled with the remaining cilantro and if you like, the Bulgarian feta cheese.