Shakshuka: Tom Hunt's Middle Eastern breakfast, taken from The Natural Cook.
A breakfast of substance - for traditional Brits, at least - involves quite a bit of frying. How lovely, then, that this Middle Eastern-hailing dish poaches its eggs. In spiced passata, no less.
"We serve this in huge pans from my festival cafe," says Tom Hunt, "with hundreds of eggs poaching in the rich tomato sauce."
We'll take four, please.
For the passata:
600g ripe tomatoes
2 basil leaves
For the shakshuka:
1 red onion, thinly sliced
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp sweet paprika
Glug of light olive oil
1 mild green chilli, sliced (optional)
2 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
3 sprigs of parsley or coriander, roughly chopped
1. To make the passata, wash the tomatoes, then blend to a fine pulp in a food processor. Gently simmer in a wide saucepan for 15-30 minutes, until they have reduced to a thick sauce. Taste them as they reduce, decide when you have reached your desired consistency and flavour, then stop cooking.
2. To store passata, line a sterilised jar with basil, pour in hot passata and seal.
3. Gently fry the onion with the cumin and paprika in the light olive oil, adding a pinch of salt and half the chilli for ten minutes until soft. Add the garlic and fry for a further five minutes.
4. Add 300g passata and simmer for 10 minutes. If the sauce becomes too dry, add a little water.
5. When you're ready to eat, make four hollows in the sauce and crack in the eggs. Cover with a lid and simmer for five minutes for soft yolks, ten minutes for hard. Serve, sprinkled with the herbs and a little pepper, on your favourite toast. Sprinkle with the rest of the chilli.
Taken from the book The Natural Cook by Tom Hunt.