Shakshuka with Gouda
This North African dish of eggs poached in a tomato-based sauce lends itself to all kinds of improvisation. In our version the usual tongue-scorching chile paste harissa is switched out for a little smoky-spicy chipotle. And of course we’ve added cheese—an aged Gouda, such as Beemster X-O-, is ideal. Great for brunch or a simple supper, this skillet dish is best served with crusty French bread.
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- ¼ large red onion thinly sliced
- ½ red bell pepper chopped
- 4 cloves garlic finely chopped
- 2 teaspoons pureed canned chipotle
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 pound 3 to 4 medium very ripe tomatoes, chopped
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup finely grated aged Gouda
- 2 large eggs
- ►In an 8- to 9-inch ovenproof skillet, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the onion and red pepper, sautéing 3 minutes, just until softened. Stir in the garlic, chipotle, and cumin; cook for 2 minutes. Add the tomatoes and salt, bring to a simmer, and cook for 10 to 12 minutes, until the mixture becomes a thick and chunky sauce.
- ►Using the back of a large spoon, make two wells in the sauce. Line each with a heaping tablespoon of cheese, keeping a hollow shape in each well to hold the eggs. Gently crack each egg into a well. Simmer the mixture for 6 to 8 minutes, until the egg whites begin to set.
- ►Meanwhile, heat the broiler. Sprinkle the remaining cheese on top of the eggs, and broil just to melt the cheese, about 1 minute. (Be sure not to overcook—the goal is to keep the egg yolks runny.) Serve promptly.