For those with a passion for runny yolks, it doesn't get much better than Shakshuka, that Middle Eastern dish of eggs poached in a spiced tomato sauce. Of course, there is one way to improve on the dish and that would be by adding chunks of Moroccan merguez à la this: Moroccan Merguez Ragout with Poached Eggs from Amanda Hesser's and Merrill Stubbs' The Food52 Cookbook.
This ragout has a lot going for it—rich, roasty tomato sauce, fatty, lamby sausage, and runny, perfectly poached eggs that soak up everything that's going on in the pan. The recipe calls for lots of crust bread for sopping but we'd go a step further and steam up a bowl full of couscous to serve alongside, making sure that every last bit of ragout finds a home.
As always with our Cook the Book feature, we have five (5) copies of The Food52 Cookbook to give away this week.
Adapted from The Food52 Cookbook by Amanda Hesser and Merrill Stubbs. Copyright © 2011. Published by William Morrow. Available wherever books are sold. All Rights Reserved
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 large onion, cut into small dice
- 4 large garlic cloves, minced
- 1 pound merguez sausage, cut into 1/2-inch thick-slices
- 1 tablespoon ras el hanout
- 1 teaspoon sweet smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- Two 15-ounce cans fire-roasted diced tomatoes, preferably Muir Glen
- 8 extra-large eggs
- 1/2 cup roughly chopped cilantro, stems included
- 2 tablespoons harissa
- Warm crusty bread, for serving
Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. Add the onion and sauté until golden. Toss in the garlic and cook another 2 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, 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 the ragout into 4 warm bowls and top each portion with 2 of the eggs, a sprinkling of cilantro, and a teaspoon of harissa.
Serve immediately with crusty bread.