Shakshouka is a dish that has roots both in the Middle East and North Africa, and it is a fun dish to veganize. The traditional preparation calls for eggs to be poached over tomato broth spiced up with coriander, paprika and other flavors. But who needs the eggs? Not us! Instead, in this variation, chickpeas are added right into the sauce, along with extra vegetables, Aleppo pepper and a hit of nutmeg for a flavorful, hearty, protein-packed situation. You don’t have to wait for breakfast to eat it, either. It is a great busy weeknight meal; serve it right out of the skillet with a side of crusty bread to sop up all that delicious sauce.
Reprinted with permission from Wait, That's Vegan by Lisa Dawn Angerame, Page Street Publishing Co. 2020. Photo credit: Alex Shytsman
Chickpea Shakshouka with Avocados and Fresh Herbs [Vegan]
- 1 tablespoon good olive oil
- 1/2 small onion, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, pressed
- 1 yellow bell pepper, diced
- 1 small zucchini, diced
- 1 teaspoon Aleppo pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon coriander
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika
- 1 nutmeg, 10 scrapes on a microplane
- Pinch of salt and a dash of pepper
- 1/4 cup tomato paste
- 1 cup water
- 1 1/2 cups cooked or 1 (15-oz [425-g]) can chickpeas, drained
- 1 avocado, split in half, pitted, peeled and sliced
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint
- Crusty bread
- Heat the oil in a cast-iron or nonstick skillet over medium heat. When it is shimmering, add the onion and sauté until translucent, about 3 to 4 minutes. Add the garlic, yellow pepper, zucchini, Aleppo pepper, coriander, paprika, nutmeg, salt and pepper. Cook until the vegetables are soft, about 8 minutes.
- Add the tomato paste. Use a wooden spoon to mix it into the vegetables, cooking it for 3 to 4 minutes.
- Add the water and the chickpeas, and mix to form a sauce. Simmer until the sauce has reduced and thickened, about 20 minutes.
- Take the pan off the heat. Place the avocado slices on top of the chickpea mixture, and sprinkle with parsley and mint. Serve in the skillet with crusty bread on the side.
Parsley is more than just a garnish, it’s a really healthy green that is high in vitamins A, K and C, and it’s also a rich source of antioxidants. Keep a bouquet of parsley in fresh water on the counter or refrigerator and snip some off when a recipe calls for it.