Weeknight Cooking

Shakshuka with Grains and Feta

August 25, 2014

For those nights when you get home hungry, stressed, and impatient, Hangry is here to help. Each Monday, Kendra Vaculin will share quick, exciting meals that anyone can make -- whether you're in your first apartment or feeding a hangry family.

Today: Call up some friends, poach some eggs in tomato sauce, and give everyone a spoon. 

“I’m making shakshuka,” I told the friend who had come over for dinner, the one holding wine in the doorway (a guest is a good guest when they come bearing alcohol). I took the bottle from him and led him down the hall into the kitchen.

Shop the Story

“Is that just Shake Shack in another language?” he asked, and for a moment my mind flew to a United Nations of burgers, a Summer Olympics of beef, rows and rows of toasted patriotic buns awaiting their national dressings. Trumpets. But there was a cardboard carton on the kitchen counter, and I remembered the task at hand. I shook-shacked my head, filing the idea away for later.  

“No,” I said. “Tonight, we’re making glorious eggs.”

It was a New York early August night, the kind usually reserved for something much lighter, but somehow the heartiness of the sauce and grains worked. I was going on my third week in the city, still largely overwhelmed but figuring out my routines; comfort food coupled with the ease of old friends was making everything feel manageable, and even a little grand. There is nothing like people you love and runny yolks at the same time. This is why brunch is such a thing, I think.

More: From now on, make sure you do brunch right.

More friends and roommates trickled into the apartment, all of whom were offered a bowl and a big spoon. “There’s shakshuka on the stove,” I said to the last to arrive, who looked at me like I had indeed not spoken English.

“It's eggs poached in tomato sauce,” I explained. “And then we put it on grains, and...”

“BE RIGHT BACK,” he said, already halfway to the kitchen. 


There was nothing left in the pan at the end of the evening, and maybe that's the best reason to make this tonight. You'd be surprised how easy cleanup is when you've licked all the bowls clean and all the wine glasses are empty.

Shakshuka with Grains and Feta

Serves 2

1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 small yellow onion, diced
1 medium tomato, chopped
16 ounces marinara sauce
4 eggs
1 big handful of greens, chopped (I used spinach)
2 cups cooked grains (like farro, quinoa, or brown rice)
2 ounces feta, crumbled
Salt and pepper
Pinch of cayenne (optional)

See the recipe (and save and print it) here.

Photos by James Ransom

Listen Now

Join The Sandwich Universe co-hosts (and longtime BFFs) Molly Baz and Declan Bond as they dive deep into beloved, iconic sandwiches.

Listen Now

See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • JanieMac
  • zora
  • Kendra Vaculin
    Kendra Vaculin
A fan of female driven comedies, a good beat, your hair today, and making foods for friends.


JanieMac August 31, 2014
love the feta and or grain addition, must try that
zora August 31, 2014
Every other recipe for shaksuka I have seen has red bell peppers or chiles (and/or harissa) in it. This recipe also is missing garlic, unless the marinara sauce includes enough. I don't doubt that your friends enjoyed this dish, but it seems like a stretch to call it shakshuka.
Kendra V. August 31, 2014
i used a pretty serious marinara, so that took care of the garlic and spice, but you're right about bell peppers -- a number of shakshuka recipes include them. maybe this is shakshukish?