According to my good mate Google, inspiration is defined as the process of being mentally stimulated to do or feel something, especially to do something creative. I however define inspiration as ‘That looks incredible and I want to stuff my face with it right now’. This post right here, you know the one you’re reading, is a result of such inspiration. Since becoming one of ‘those’ people who posts nothing but food photos on Instagram (FYI I made it through a whole week without posting a picture of steak… go me) inspiration levels have been at an all time high. You see the world is full of people who love food as much as I do. You’ve got Laura over at Laura’s Mess, Jemima at Feed Your Soul Perth, then there is Kristy from Kristy Leigh and how could I forget Ai-Ling from Blue Apocalypse and of course Bhavna from Just a girl From Aamchi Mumbai and if you haven’t already you need to go have a giggle at the awesomeness from Food is The Best Shit Ever and there are so many, but in order to let you get on with what ever you are supposed to be doing right now I’ll leave it there. If you are having an extended lunch break on account of me talking too much I suggest you skip the the last paragraph, and take note of the recipe then go home and cook it.
Actually that’s a lie, there is one more person who I need to mention. April from What Can I Bake? Now don’t be fooled by the name of the blog, it is far from just cakes and cookies and other baked goodness, this chick can cook! I mean seriously she just took out the Noosa International Food and Wine Festival’s best home cook competition, truth be told she is probably a better cook than me… but I’m willing to take that. She took out the competition with her flavour pack Shakshuka.
Now my plan was to replicate April’s Shakshuka recipe that was published in the August edition of Taste Magazine. But plans don’t always work out. Did I ever mention I was a Boy Scout once? yeah probably not… but I was. Be prepared, I’m sure you’ve all heard it before, I like to think they drilled that into me pretty good, but I guess I was wrong. You see, I went shopping knowing exactly what I needed to get, it was all stored in my head (lists are for plebs). So as I’m shopping, I’m thinking to myself, yep I’ve got those spices in my pantry, tin tomatoes check, onion check, Chorizo yep I’ve got me one of these bad boys hanging out in the fridge ready to roll. So I end up getting home from the shops with minimal groceries. Naturally I crack open a nice cold can of beer (because cooking with beer is the next black) and get to work on prepping the dish, as I open the fridge memories come flooding back of a boozy Sunday afternoon involving fried chorizo with a splash of lime and more cold beer… it was at that precise moment my world came crashing down around me… there was no Chorizo… insert sad face here.
Now this sorts out the little kids from the big kids, the sugar free donuts from the sugar packed donuts the blah blah blah. Basically there was two options… go back to the shops (yeah no) or improvise… I cracked open another cold one and got the thinking cap going. When it comes to cooking there are no rules… none, not even one. So I ended up using some Jack Daniel sausages that I picked up from the local butcher, I used what Moroccan flavours I had in the pantry and more or less stuck to the original recipe obvious with fresh sausage in place of flavour town Chorizo. Fortunately for me these Jack Daniel sausages are the bomb and seem to work well! Below you will find my slightly modified version of April’s original recipe which can be found right here.
Basically what I’m trying to say is recipes are kinda like Yoda, do or do not, there is no try as long as you end up with an edible meal then all is well and Yoda will be happy. (If you have to click the link to find out who Yoda is, we are no longer friends.)
April’s Shakshuka (Slightly Modified)Print Recipe
- 1 onion, finely diced
- 1 garlic clove, crushed
- 1 tablespoon moroccan spice mix
- 1 fresh jack daniels sausage (or pork sausage or chorizo)
- 1/2 can cannelloni beans
- 1 tin of crushed tomatoes
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 2 eggs per person
- 2 tablespoon roughly chopped coriander
- 1 loaf of crusty Bread to serve
Over a medium low heat, add olive oil and cook onions until softened but not too coloured, add the sausages and garlic, spices and cook until the sausages are golden and gnarly looking.
Add the beans, tomato paste, crushed tomatoes and simmer for about 20 minutes. Staring every now and then.
After about 20 minutes the sauce should have thickened a little and now it is time to crack your eggs in. Avoid breaking the yolks and definitely avoid shell! You get more than enough crunch with a side of crispy bread.
Simmer uncovered for 10 minutes or until the eggs are cooked to your liking. Add the coriander and stuff your face full of this goodness.