Shakshuka is Tunisian in origin but has become hugely popular in Jerusalem and all over Israel as substantial breakfast or lunch fare. Tunisian cuisine has a passionate love affair with eggs and this particular version of shakshuka is the seasonal variant for the summer and early autumn. Potatoes are used during the winter and eggplants in spring.
- Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan over medium heat and add the pilpelchuma or harissa, tomato paste, peppers, garlic, cumin, and ¾ teaspoon salt. Stir and cook over medium heat for about 8 minutes to allow the peppers to soften. Add the tomatoes, bring to a gentle simmer, and cook for a further 10 minutes until you have quite a thick sauce. Taste for seasoning.
- Make 8 little dips in the sauce. Gently break the eggs and carefully pour each into its own dip. Do the same with the yolks. Use a fork to swirl the egg whites a little bit with the sauce, taking care not to break the yolks. Simmer gently for 8 to 10 minutes, until the egg whites are set but the yolks are still runny (you can cover the pan with a lid if you wish to hasten the process). Remove from the heat, leave for a couple of minutes to settle, then spoon into individual plates and serve with the labneh or yogurt.
Reprinted with permission from Jerusalem, copyright 2012 Yotam Ottolenghi. Published by Ten Speed Press, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC.