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Parsi Tomato-Poached Eggs

January 3, 2013

Parsi Tomato-Poached EggsPin it!

New Year’s Day breakfast, 2013.

Ok, so it was more like brunch. (At lunch time.)

Since I stayed in for a low-key New Year’s Eve, it’s not as if I required a hangover cure– though this would serve: a savory blend of juicy acidic-sweet tomatoes, spices, and comforting poached eggs, rich in layers of flavor and texture (all sopped up with fresh rustic bread).

This is a lovely dish, and one which I’ve barely modified straight out of a cookbook– don’t you love it when that’s possible?

Parsi Tomato-Poached Eggs (with green bell pepper), like ShakshoukaPin it!

It’s very similar to shakshouka— which I still haven’t made yet(?!)– and probably right up there among the best ways to combine two of my favorite edibles: tomatoes and eggs.

(Garnish with cilantro, and that’s three of my favorites.)

Tomatoes and eggs for Parsi Tomato-Poached Eggs

You might recognize this particular combination of spices from Indian cuisine. The cookbook I used (Anjum’s New Indian) describes this recipe as “inspired by the cooking of the Parsis,” a group of people who immigrated to the west coast of India from Iran centuries ago. Parsi cuisine is now a unique style of Indian cooking; you can learn much more about Parsi Food over at the wonderful blog Peri’s Spice Ladle.

Parsi Tomato-Poached Eggs (with green bell pepper)Pin it!

Hearty, healthy, and satisfying– not to mention fancy– these eggs would make an excellent brunch, lunch, or dinner (or– at 1 egg per person– snack).

I can’t, however, recommend that you prepare them for breakfast without first snacking on something substantial, since they take a bit more time to prepare than your average huevos rancheros (coincidentally, my 2012 New Year’s post!). It’s just a little labor-intensive when you’ve barely put a dent in your first cup of morning coffee… though compared to other dinner fare, this is a pretty speedy recipe. Just enlist some help with the tomato-prep duties, and you’re in business!

Parsi Tomato-Poached Eggs (with green bell pepper)

I couldn’t have asked for a better start to another year of good eating. Happy 2013 to everyone!


A note to my dear readers: I appreciate your comments and likes– and even your page views– more than you can imagine! It makes this blogging endeavor feel so worthwhile. As I’ve mentioned before, I love the momentum that it’s given me, and this blog, to post new recipes twice a week. However, if 2013 is going to be The Year of the Dissertation– 2012 certainly wasn’t– then I’m afraid there just aren’t enough hours in the day. It saddens me to cut back on posting, and I have SUCH a long mental list of recipes that I can’t wait to share with you all, but at least for the near future, I will skip my Monday posts and share new recipes only on Thursdays.

I truly hope you’ll all stick with me, and keep checking in to see what’s new!

(If you write your own food blog, I hope you’ll understand; maybe this way I’ll have a little more time for reading and commenting on your blogs! …I apologize for being so seriously delinquent.)

Parsi Tomato-Poached Eggs (with green bell pepper)Pin it.

Print this recipe. (PDF)


Parsi Tomato-Poached Eggs
(Barely adapted from Anjum’s New Indian cookbook.)

(Serves 2)

~ 4-5 medium-large vine-ripened tomatoes, peeled and seeded (see step #1), then roughly chopped
~ 1-2 Tbsp. ghee (or vegetable oil)
~ ½ medium onion, diced (or chopped in a food processor)
~ ½ green bell pepper, sliced
~ 1 clove garlic, minced
~ ¾ tsp. chili powder
~ ½ tsp. ground cardamom
~ ½ tsp. garam masala
~ ¼ tsp. turmeric
~ salt, to taste
~ 1½ tsp. red or white wine vinegar
~ 4 large eggs
~ dash of ground chipotle (or other chili pepper, for extra heat)
~ fresh cilantro, to garnish
~ fresh-baked bread, like baguettes, for serving

How to make it:

1. To peel the tomatoes: Bring a pot of water to a simmer or a boil. Cut an ‘X’ into the bottom of each tomato, then use a slotted spoon to lower the tomatoes into the hot water, for about 20 seconds each. Remove, let cool a bit, and the skin should peel right off (return to the hot water if peeling them is still tricky). Once peeled, cut each tomato in fourths (in wedges) and use your fingers to pop out the seeds. The tomatoes are now ready to chop.

How to peel tomatoesPeeling tomatoes

2. In a medium non-stick skillet or saucepan, heat the ghee or vegetable oil, then fry the onion until soft. Add the green bell pepper and garlic and fry another 2 minutes, stirring often, until the garlic is cooked. Stir in the ground spices and salt, and cook for another minute over low heat.

Onions and green bell peppers for Parsi Tomato-Poached EggsOnions, green bell peppers, and tomatoes for Parsi Tomato-Poached Eggs

3. Add the chopped tomatoes, mix well, and bring the pan to a simmer (you may need to add 4-6 Tbsp. of water depending on the juiciness of your tomatoes). Cover and let simmer for 15-20 minutes.

Parsi Tomato-Poached Eggs (with green bell pepper)

4. Taste and adjust the seasoning, then add the vinegar, and mix well. Carefully crack the eggs on top of the tomatoes. Sprinkle a pinch of salt over the eggs. Cover and cook for 3-4 minutes, or until the eggs are done to taste. Serve warm with fresh bread.

Print this recipe! (PDF)

Parsi Tomato-Poached Eggs (with green bell pepper) and crusty baguettesPin it!

Parsi Tomato-Poached Eggs (with green bell pepper), like Shakshouka

Related recipe posts:
> Eggs Benedict with Greek Yogurt Hollandaise Sauce
> Chilaquiles Verdes (and Roasted Tomatillo Salsa)
> Sambal Goreng Telur (Indonesian Egg Curry) with Chinese Long Beans

56 Comments leave one →
  1. January 3, 2013 9:02 am

    Wow. Ok, so eggs are also my favorite food ever, and above all, served with vegetables and spices! Love, love; love this recipe. Thanks for the link to Peri’s Spice Ladle, certainly a place I will enjoy!
    And since I am also trying to complete my Dissertation in 2013, I absolutely understand your decision to post less. Good luck with your work!!!

    • January 3, 2013 9:20 am

      Ahhh, this is just the encouragement I wanted to hear; thank you! And we share the same taste in breakfast foods, because I could eat this every (other) morning for the rest of my life, alternating with chilaquiles…

      I do hope you’ll enjoy Peri’s Spice Ladle– it’s a great resource for Indian and Parsi cooking.

      And good luck on your dissertation, too!!!!! I’m actually aiming to complete mine in 2014, but I’ll need to get the bulk of it done in 2013 to make that happen!

  2. January 3, 2013 9:03 am

    This looks great and I love the spices. And it looks like it would work if you don’t like poached eggs like my husband. I would add the egg to my bit. :)

    • January 3, 2013 9:23 am

      Thanks! Yes, exactly– I’m sure it’d also be tasty without the eggs, especially if you still have some nice bread to enjoy it with.

      Another thing you could do– if your husband likes eggs, but just not runny poached ones– is to let some of the eggs cook a few minutes longer, until the yolk has cooked through. Maybe he would enjoy that? (I actually cooked mine a little too much for my taste this time, since I was so busy taking photos!)

      • January 3, 2013 9:33 am

        The only way he likes eggs is in an omelette though that might work as well. Naan would be nice with this also.

      • January 3, 2013 9:37 am

        Yes, definitely. Naan for breakfast seems a little decadent, but that would have been positively scrumptious!

  3. January 3, 2013 9:08 am

    we will miss you for sure but of course we will stick around and eagerly anticipate your Thursday posts. I may be in the same boat with you this year. I start a new role at my company next week and it may be intense.

    • January 3, 2013 9:24 am

      Thank you, Sarah! I really appreciate hearing that. :) And good luck/congrats with your new role at your company! I hope it still leaves you with plenty of time and energy to cook, blog, and eat!

  4. January 3, 2013 9:36 am

    Great recipe as always Allison. Will miss your cheering posts, but completely understand other commitments–I’m in the same boat & haven’t really blogged much due to a lot of other activity..happy new year!

    • January 3, 2013 9:39 am

      Thanks, Charu! Keep checking back on Thursdays…

      And I hope you’re able to find more time to blog soon! Happy new year to you, too!

  5. January 3, 2013 9:48 am

    I am surely trying this this week-end! Thanks for the idea!

  6. January 3, 2013 10:34 am

    Allison, I totally understand where you’re coming from with regards to blogging! I was just debating myself how to keep going with my blog, as I am going to start working this month and will have much less free time. I think it’s great to realize what you can and can’t do, and to set achievable goals. I love your posts and will look forward to Thursdays :) Hope your dissertation goes well this year!!

    • January 4, 2013 8:49 am

      Thank you, Maura!!! It’s so nice to hear that kind of encouragement.

      And I hope the answer for your with your blog is also not to stop blogging entirely, but just to cut back a bit– especially if you really enjoy it. I know I enjoy reading it! :)

  7. irv silver permalink
    January 3, 2013 10:58 am

    allison get your dissertation done so you can come back to your true love

    • January 4, 2013 8:49 am

      Thanks for commenting, Poppy! I will try my best to do just that!

  8. Jessica permalink
    January 3, 2013 11:45 am

    do you ever use canned tomatoes to speed up the whole recipe?

    • January 4, 2013 8:51 am

      Nope, but only because I’ve only made this twice so far! (The first time with Roma tomatoes, which were also delicious.)

      I’m sure that would not only speed things up, but would also likely be a better-tasting option during the winter.

  9. January 3, 2013 12:30 pm

    Looks incredible. Simple ingredients, but such complex flavors.

    • January 4, 2013 8:52 am

      Exactly! It’s all about the simple fresh ingredients, and just the right blend of spices (by the way, the blend of spices is really the only thing I’ve modified from the original recipe).

  10. January 3, 2013 2:23 pm

    Yum Yum Yum: What’s not to LOVE here? I so much want it now, even that it is bedtime over here! waw! Happy 2013 to you & your loved ones too! xxx

  11. Richard Adelman permalink
    January 3, 2013 4:24 pm

    that looks really good! congratulations on devoting more time to finishing your dissertation. and Happy New Year to you both! love, dad

    • January 4, 2013 8:54 am

      Thanks, Dad! I bet you would really like this meal.

      Happy New Year from me and Paula!

  12. January 3, 2013 8:52 pm

    Wowza! Thats what I call a breakfast! A definite must try!

    • January 4, 2013 8:56 am

      :) I agree! I love eggs– in nearly any form– for breakfast, and I usually eat them with a sliced up tomato on the side, but this takes that combination and makes it exponentially better. I could eat this nearly every day. Hope you get a chance to try it soon!

  13. January 3, 2013 10:17 pm

    The dish looks amazing and of course we’ll stick with you. :-)
    I look forward to reading your weekly post.

  14. January 4, 2013 7:17 am

    Must be something in the air–Todd made Eggs in Purgatory (saucy eggs with salami and bell peppers galore) last night for supper.

    Best of luck with the dissertation! I’ve taken the entire month of January off from all my blogs just to get the behind-the-scenes stuff that keeps getting pushed aside done, so I totally understand.

    • January 4, 2013 8:59 am

      Thanks! I know what you mean about the behind-the-scenes stuff that never gets done– I’ve been meaning to go back to my older posts and swap in re-sized (smaller) image files to take up less storage space on WordPress, and I just didn’t see that happening while posting twice a week… who am I kidding– it still might not happen anytime soon. Good luck with your January month of catch up!

      And Eggs in Purgatory? I don’t eat salami, but that’s a nice name for a dish. (Now if only my girlfriend liked eating cooked bell peppers… she only likes them raw, so she picked hers out of her bowl after I took the photos.)

      • Scraps permalink
        January 4, 2013 9:02 am

        I would imagine any other flavorful charcuterie or even spicy seitan could be used in place of the salami.

      • January 4, 2013 9:09 am

        Yes, or I was thinking maybe a spicy jalapeño chicken sausage…

  15. January 4, 2013 9:30 am

    Oh my! This recipe! I am drooling over this. This is officially on my must make asap list!

    • January 4, 2013 11:57 am

      Nice– I think it should make everyone’s must-make-asap list… everyone who loves eggs and tomatoes, that is. I hope you like it! :)

  16. January 4, 2013 11:59 am

    Hi there, I just wanted to let you know I nominated you for the Kreative Blogger Award. If you are interested click here

  17. January 4, 2013 12:44 pm

    Hi Allison, running late on this comment, been traveling and getting inspired by Spain over this winter…such a beautiful country:)

    This egg recipe is delicious and you’ve made it so well! And thanks for the shout out to Peri’s Spice Ladle, really appreciate it!

    Adapted from the ever-popular Parsi egg dish (you’ve probably figured out from my Parsi recipes how much Parsis’ love their eggs!) called ‘tamota per endu’ which translates to tomato with eggs on them. I like the addition of green peppers though the Parsis use red vinegar in place of white…

    Love your blog and I’d read it even if you post once a month! Good luck with the dissertation, this is the year for it:)

    • January 4, 2013 12:48 pm

      Thanks, Peri! That’s so nice of you to say.

      And I was hoping I’d get to hear what you thought of the recipe itself… :) Good to know about using red wine vinegar in place of white– I keep that around the house too, and I’ll try it next time!

      That’s wonderful you’ve been traveling in Spain! I lived there in 2001 (in Barcelona) and traveled around the country a bit then, but haven’t gotten the chance to go back since, though I’d love to. Hope you’re enjoying some good food there!

      • January 4, 2013 1:35 pm

        Barcelona was an amazing city…made me home sick for my native city of Bombay, similar culture and vibrancy! And we ate too much croissants and tapas and mixto sandwiches! Hope you get to visit back there soon:)

      • January 8, 2013 11:26 am

        Yum! Sounds like you enjoyed Barcelona to its fullest. I hope I get back there sometime soon too. :)

  18. January 4, 2013 4:04 pm

    I’m new to your blog, but I’m busy enough that one irresistable recipe post a week will be fine with me. I admire your commitment to work on your dissertation and wish you steady progress and great success.

    • January 8, 2013 11:25 am

      Thank you, Jennifer! That’s so nice of you to say… and welcome! :)

  19. January 4, 2013 8:27 pm

    This sounds delicious, and like a great way to start any day of the year! Happy new year. :)

  20. January 21, 2013 6:40 pm

    Totally yum. Love eggs and tomato combination – this is now going to be this weekend’s breakfast. Am just about to return to study after too many years off so I will be feeling your pain! All the best for it and I look forward to the weekly posts!

    • January 23, 2013 6:02 pm

      Yay, I hope you enjoy this for breakfast! It’s a great way to kick off a weekend day of good eating. :)

      And glad to know there are others in the same boat in terms of the time squeeze for studying/research/writing… I also took some years off to work before going back to school, and it was an adjustment in each direction!

  21. February 13, 2013 1:27 pm

    Oh my goodness! I love shakshouka! This might have to be dinner tonight when I get home from work. Thanks for sharing! Good luck with the Dissertation!

    I found your blog through Joy the Baker’s blog~ yay! Hope your day is going super well! [waves]

    • February 14, 2013 9:15 am

      Thank you! And welcome! :)

      I hope you get a chance to try making this dish soon… Your comment reminded me that I should make it again soon, too– I swear I could eat it every day for breakfast.

      I just took a look at your blog, and I bet my fiancee would love it (she just taught herself how to knit recently and she keeps telling me that she wants to knit all the things!). I’ll send her the url. :)


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