arabian gulf breakfast shakshouka
Photo: Bobbi Lin

Derived from the Arabic "shakshek," which means to shake, this Gulf breakfast favorite calls for a flavor combination of baked eggs nestled on a bed of spicy, aromatic tomatoes. It's just the thing for feeding a brunch crowd.


  • 4 tablespoons ghee, plus more for brushing

  • 10 ounces baby spinach

  • 1 small onion, chopped (about 2 cups)

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced

  • 4 cups chopped tomatoes (from 5 medium tomatoes)

  • Pinch of red-pepper flakes

  • 4 large eggs

  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

  • Chopped fresh cilantro, for serving (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Heat 2 teaspoons ghee in a large skillet over medium-high. Gradually add spinach and cook until wilted. Remove to a paper towel-lined plate; set aside.

  2. Wipe out the skillet and heat 3 tablespoons ghee over medium-high. Add onion and cook until very soft and translucent, 10 to 12 minutes. Add garlic and cook 5 minutes more. Add tomatoes and red-pepper flakes and cook until tomatoes have broken down and most of the liquid has been absorbed, about 15 minutes. Remove from heat; set aside.

  3. Brush four 6-ounce shallow baking dishes with remaining 1 teaspoon ghee. Divide spinach equally among them, spreading evenly. Top with tomato mixture, creating a well in the center. Crack an egg into each well. Season egg with salt and black pepper.

  4. Place baking dishes on a baking sheet and transfer to the oven. Bake until the egg yolks are soft and egg whites are opaque, 15 to 18 minutes.

  5. Serve topped with a pinch of black pepper and cilantro, if desired.

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