July 1, 2009

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Serves 4

Though this basic recipe is wonderfully sustaining, there are endless variations, which might include adding sauteed onions and bell peppers, cooked sausages, spinach and feta, or chili peppers and cilantro. Some Israelis add zhug, a Yemenite hot pepper condiment similar to harissa.

2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 1/2 cups canned tomatoes, drained and crushed in a bowl
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
2 tablespoons tomato paste
8 eggs
1. In a skillet, heat the oil. Add the garlic and crushed pepper. Cook, stirring constantly for 1 minute or until the garlic is lightly browned. Add the tomatoes and cumin. Cook, stirring often, for 10 minutes.

2. Add the tomato paste, cover the pan, and simmer for 2 minutes. Taste for seasoning; the sauce should be highly flavored. Add more crushed red pepper or salt, if you like

3. One by one, break the eggs into the tomato sauce, jiggling the pan a little to spread the whites.

4. Partially cover the pan and cook over low heat for 5 minutes or until the whites set. Adapted from “Book of New Israeli Food’’