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January 2017

It’s officially 2017!

I can hardly believe another year has passed. So much tumult, so much anxiety, so much excitement – and yet, so much to be thankful for – it brought a whole lot of ups and downs, I’m sure, for everyone. But as the dust settles from the Tasmanian Devil known as 2016, I prefer to focus on all of the wonderful moments the year brought, and the many blessings I was fortunate enough to experience and have. New opportunities, new babies, new friends, new challenges – as well as the best constant things in my life, like old friends, family near and far, hobbies rekindled and loves that get only stronger with each passing day.

My better half and I spent the last day of 2016 in our pajamas all day, cooking food, whippin’ and sippin’ homemade spiked eggnog and finally watching the phenomenon called Stranger Things on Netflix. We actually managed to stay awake until midnight, and caught the ball drop in Times Square on TV. But after 8 hours of bingeing on a sci-fi thriller series, I wondered if I had sabotaged my sleep. The eggnog apparently took care of my worries – something else to be thankful for.

So here we are, the very first day of 2017. (That sounds so crazy! Remember when we were all freaked out about Y2K??!! Oh time… how you escape us all.)

The sun rose again, along with another day of opportunities. My first opportunity of 2017 came with breakfast. I’ve always loved spicy food, and I’ve especially always loved eggs. So when I was first introduced to shakshuka years ago in LA, I knew this would be a new favorite, the spicier middle-eastern ‘huevos rancheros’ sister.shakshuka, shakshouka, breakfast, brunch, eggs, spicy, jalapeño, jalapeno, cast iron skillet, middle eastern, low carb, gluten free, mise en place, prep

The best part of this dish is how healthy and versatile it is – it’s gluten-free, it can be low-carb if you eat it without the traditional bread accompaniment, and you can raise or lower the heat factor easily.

And as you can see in my photos, I even customized it and made it ‘for one’ by quartering the recipe. It isn’t baking, after all, so you’re safe.

So without further ado – Welcome, 2017!

Spicy Shakshuka

  • Servings: 2-4
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Again – this recipe is easy to customize for one by quartering. I personally prefer using a cast iron skillet for this dish, but you can use any medium sized skillet or pan for this dish. If you prefer a less spicy dish, you can either exclude any jalapeño altogether, or you can de-seed the jalapeño and only include the ribs. Also, for a low-carb option, there’s no need to eat this dish with the traditional bread – no flavor lost there!

Ingredients

  • 1 TB olive oil
  • 1/2 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1-2 jalapeños, chopped (optional; with/without seeds depending on spice preference)
  • 1 1/2 cups tomato sauce
  • 1/4 cup harissa sauce
  • 5-6 eggs
  • 2 TB chopped fresh cilantro or fresh basil
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • french or sourdough bread on the side (optional)

Directions

  1. Heat olive oil in your skillet over medium heat, and add onion, garlic and jalapeños. Sautée until they’ve softened, about 5 minutes.
  2. Add tomato sauce and harissa to skillet, stirring to mix evenly. Bring to a light boil over medium heat. Carefully crack eggs open onto tomato mixture, spacing them out evenly and gently so as not to break the yolks. Lower heat and simmer until the egg whites are white and no longer transparent, and the yolks remain bright and yellow.
  3. Remove skillet from heat. Top with chopped herbs, and add salt and pepper to taste.
  4. Serve hot with a side of bread to soak up the delicious tomato mixture. (Optional)

shakshuka, shakshouka, breakfast, brunch, eggs, spicy, jalapeño, jalapeno, cast iron skillet, middle eastern, low carb, gluten free
and the low-carb option!
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