Eggs in Tomato Sauce with Peppers


Eggs in tomato sauce aren’t a novelty in my family kitchen, but for some reason, they fell to the very bottom of our repertoire. Until now. I especially love the fact that this dish assumes different names depending on where it comes from: shakshuka is very in vogue right now, but in Italy we’d rather call it uova in purgatorio (eggs in purgatory) or uova al pomodoro.

My take, however, looks at shakshuka for add-in ingredients: from the peppers in the sauce to the feta and the the sprinkle of parsley on top. All that said, whatever the name, this is a dish to make whenever you ache for comfort and simplicity, and that is at ease as a weekend breakfast as much as an impromptu dinner.

Uova al Pomodoro coi Peperoni

Serves 2-3
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 onion, chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 tsp chilli flakes
2 ripe tomatoes, chopped
1 large red pepper, seeded and thinly sliced
1 can (400 g) chopped tomatoes
4 eggs
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 small bunch flat leaf parsley, chopped
100 g (1/2 cup) crumbled feta (or grated Parmesan), to serve

Heat the oil in a large skillet and fry the onion and garlic gently until tender. Add the chilli and allow to heat for a minute, until fragrant, stirring frequently.

Stir in the pepper and both fresh and canned tomatoes. Season with salt and pepper to taste, then lower the heat and cook until the vegetables are tender – about 15 minutes. If the sauce reduces too much, add a splash of water.

Crack the first egg in a small bowl. Form a hole in the sauce in one corner of the skillet, and slip in the egg. Repeat with the rest, then leave the eggs to cook until the egg becomes opaque while the yolk is still rather soft – about 7 minutes. Once cooked, remove from the heat and season the eggs with some more salt and pepper, then top the eggs with a generous handful of freshly chopped parsley, and the crumbled feta or grated Parmesan.

Serve hot with a lot of toasted bread for mopping the sauce.

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  1. Rosemarie October 27, 2015

    Stunning photos of one of my favourite dishes, uovo in pomodoro! Have never added capsicums to it, would love to try it this way one day…

    • Valeria October 30, 2015

      Dear Rosemarie, peppers are indeed a new addition I borrowed from the many Middle Eastern versions I got to try in recent times as they became particularly fashionable. I think they make for a nice texture contrast while also adding sweetness and colour (in case you use yellow and green ones, too). I'd love you hear how you liked it in case you give it a go!

  2. Lynn Trepicchio December 17, 2016

    My Neapolitan aunt made this dish (without peppers) and served over a toasted slice of Italian bread and a slice of fresh mozzarella. She called it Eggs in Purgatory. Thanks for sharing this version. Lovely.

    • Valeria December 19, 2016

      I love eggs in purgatory. This in fact is a twist on that very classic. x


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