My hubby and I really love cooking together, but these days, between his hectic med school schedule and my work schedule, we rarely get around to it during the week. Weekend mornings are the perfect opportunity to get the kitchen dirty and enjoy a leisurely meal made by the both of us. One of our favorites is this Green Shakshuka recipe: warm eggs cooked over a bed of garlicky leeks and greens with tangy feta cheese, all served with crusty bread.
Shakshuka, the famous North African skillet egg dish, is traditionally made with chunky, spiced tomato sauce. But what I love most about shakshuka is its versatility; you can pretty much sauté any vegetable medley, crack eggs over it, and it will be delicious. For this lighter, green version, we traded in the tomatoes for sautéed dark leafy greens. Mushroom or eggplant would work really well here, too.
A cast iron pan is perfect for this recipe, as it's easily transferable from the stovetop directly into the oven. Simply sauté the leeks, garlic, and greens in the pan, add the crumbled cheese, crack in the eggs, and finish it off in the oven. So simple and so delicious.
This recipe doesn't only have to be for Sunday brunch; it's also a great option for a quick weeknight dinner. Serve it with whole grains for a more substantial, filling meal.
large leeks, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced
large celery stalk, sliced
garlic cloves, minced
spicy chile pepper (any variety would work here), sliced
bunch of Swiss chard, cut into 1/2-inch ribbons
spinach (tightly packed)
Salt and pepper, to season
crumbled feta cheese
Preheat oven to 375°F.
Over medium heat, warm the olive oil in a 9-inch cast iron skillet. Add the sliced leeks and celery. Cook until leeks soften, about 5 minutes. Add the minced garlic and sliced spicy pepper, and sauté for another 3 minutes. Toss in the Swiss chard, spinach, oregano, and cumin. Season to taste with salt and pepper (make sure not to over-salt the mixture, as the feta adds saltiness as well).
Once the Swiss chard and spinach have wilted, scrape down the sides, and pat down the mixture. Sprinkle the crumbled feta over the greens mixture and carefully crack the eggs over the top, one at a time and spaced slightly apart. Add some more freshly ground black pepper.
Transfer the skillet to the oven and bake for 7 to 10 minutes (longer if you prefer your eggs cooked more, or less time for runnier eggs). Serve immediately with fresh crusty bread.
Get creative with the add-ins, including the cheese! Goat cheese and blue cheese are really delicious in green shakshuka.