With origins in the Middle East, Shakshuka was traditionally eaten for breakfast, but we find this goes down well at any time of the day. It’s spicy, healthy and pretty cheap, so overall it’s a big winner! If you like a bit of heat and are vegetarian, you should definitely  try this dish.

For me it’s all about the tomatoes! Shakshuka can made using tinned tomatoes but if you have time, I prefer to use fresh, ripe tomatoes.

Char’s tip is to remove the eye and score a cross in the bottom of each tomato before blanching them, then plunging them in cold water. This way you can peel them, quarter them and remove the seeds and acidic juice easily. They will reduce quicker when cooking and sweeten the flavour of the Shakshuka sauce.


1tsp cumin seeds

1tsp coriander seeds

1 red onion, sliced

2 cloves garlic, crushed

6 ripe tomatoes, diced

1tsp harissa

1 green pepper, sliced

coriander, small bunch

2 eggs

1tsp black sesame seeds

salt and pepper

In a dry frying pan, roast the cumin and coriander seeds (partially crushed in a pestle and mortar) for a few minutes. Add some oil and the onion and fry it for 10 mins, seasoning well. Then add the garlic, harissa and the tomatoes and continue to cook. I add the pepper after another 20 minutes (otherwise they cook for too long and loose all their colour). When the sauce has reduced nicely, break the eggs into the pan and cover with a lid, until the eggs are cooked to your liking. Sprinkle over some chopped coriander and black sesame seeds and serve with some flatbreads if it’s breakfast or lunch, or with a fresh side salad if it’s for dinner.