Thursday, August 21, 2008

Tomatoes, tomatoes, tomatoes

I can never get to eat too many good tomatoes, even in this high tomato season. I decided to cook some of the gorgeous ripe ones I bought yesterday. Despite what some experts say about canned tomatoes being just as good for cooking as raw ones, there's a splendid richness that comes from cooking really ripe tomatoes and eating them right away.

I didn't want to cook them too long, or make anything too complicated. So I made Shakshuka, an Israeli breakfast favorite for dinner for the two of us. Len's cousin Janet introduced us to this treat on our last day in Israel a couple of years ago.

I made this dish once before, but I don't think I posted anything about it that time. Believe it or not, we ate them with a grilled pepper and tomato salad. As I say, I can never get too many tomatoes in August.

What I did, based roughly on a Joan Nathan recipe --

2 Tb. olive oil
5 cloves garlic, roughly diced
2 large ripe tomatoes (around 12 oz each), cut in bite-size pieces
2 teaspoons salt, or to taste
1 teaspoon Hungarian paprika
squeeze of tomato paste from a tube

4 large eggs

Over medium heat brown the garlic a little bit in the oil in a small frying pan. Add the tomatoes, salt, paprika, and tomato paste. Bring to a simmer and cook, uncovered, over low heat for 20 to 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Stop here if you aren't ready to serve; reheat the tomatoes when ready to cook the eggs.

Break the eggs into the simmering tomato mixture. Cover and continue to cook for about 3 to 4 minutes, until the eggs are set. Serve directly from the frying pan.

1 comment:

Jen said...

This is very similar to an Armenian recipe that our Armenian "daughter" (exchange student) showed us during her year with us. It's a wonderful combination of flavors!