Merguez Shakshuka ~ North African spiced lamb sausage in an onion, pepper and tomato sauce topped with poached eggs.
Have this for breakfast, brunch, lunch or dinner, it’s sure to satisfy!
Shakshuka or Chakchouka comes in many forms such as this and is well-known throughout the Middle East and North Africa as a breakfast dish although I prefer it for lunch or dinner.
I have made Shakshuka many times, never very keen on the poached eggs that lay on top of the sauce however, now that we have Merguez, a north African lamb sausage in the mix I am quite the poached egg ‘convert’.
You have to be quite patient once you have added the eggs because they do take a while longer to cook especially if you go for the gentle cook like I did, make sure all the egg white is just that – white before serving.
Merguez brings some of the fat and spice to flavour this dish, then you also have extra virgin olive oil, onion, garlic, bell pepper, Ras El Hanout and tomato whilst cooking and to top it off a dash of optional harissa when serving.
Fancy making your own Merguez? Of course if you can’t find Merguez and don’t want to make your own, you can replace with regular halal lamb sausage and increase the amount of spices a little in the sauce.
If you’re a regular reader here, you will know I am a big fan of using canned tomatoes. For this dish though I say fresh is best, you want the sweetness from the tomato, not so much the strength or acidic punch you get from canned. I did add a little tomato purée but that was more as a security measure (?!) to make sure some tomato flavour came through at the end.
No one could ever accuse Merguez Shakshuka of being bland that’s for sure!
I always add bell pepper to my Shakshuka. You can leave it out if you don’t have any/don’t like but if you do have, use any colour you prefer. I used green bell pepper on this occasion but my favourite is red. Like your food fiery hot? add in a pierced chilli, it’s as simple as that.
I hope you enjoy my recipe it’s barely adapted from seriouseats.
North African-spiced lamb sausage in a onion, pepper and tomato sauce with poached eggs.
- 4 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 small onion, roughly chopped
- 1 bell pepper, cored, seeded and roughly chopped
- 2 large garlic cloves, roughly sliced
- 220 grams or 4 halal Merguez sausage, halved
- 1/2 tablespoon Ras El Hanout spice mix
- 1/2 teaspoon sweet paprika
- fine sea salt, to taste (for me 1/4 teaspoon)
- 1/2 teaspoon tomato purée
- 240 grams tomatoes, sliced into eighths
- 3-4 eggs
- Fresh coriander / parsley, chopped
- Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. Add the onion, bell pepper and garlic, sauté until onion has softened and has begun to turn golden, about 5-10 minutes. Add the Merguez and sauté until almost cooked through, about 3 minutes.
- Lower the heat to medium-low and add the Ras El Hanout, paprika, tomato puree and salt. Stir to combine and cook for a minute to lightly toast the spices. Add the tomatoes. Turn up the heat to medium and cook until the mixture has thickened slightly, about 5 minutes.
- Crack the eggs over the mixture, cover, and cook until the whites set but the yolks are still soft.
- Spoon sauce onto plates and top each portion with an egg or two, fresh herbs and some harissa if using. Serve with crusty bread or if your not counting the calories a flatbread such as msemmen.
timings are approximate