Monday, 19 August 2013

The Fire Is Not Quenched

Eggs In Purgatory is a hangover dish by Nigella in her cookbook, Nigellisma. According to Miss Lawson, this dish cooked in a fiery tomato sauce feels like heaven after a night of carousing. She first made this when she was a teenage student living in Florence. This Italian version Uova Al Purgatorio cost very little and is quick and simple to make, but look so delizioso. You can cook for one, or for a group in a large communal pan for a quick meal of breakfast or supper.

Please note that there are few versions of Eggs in Purgatory, originally called Shashuka or Harrisa Egg. The spices used in the original version reflected its roots in North Africa. It is a staple poached eggs dish in Tunisia, Morocco, Algeria and Libya. It is also popularly eaten in Israel. The name Eggs in Purgatory, is probably the Italian/Spanish version where there are mostly Roman Catholics. The eggs simmering in a fiery bubbly tomato sauce look like they are in purgatory.  Purgatory is the place where those who die in a state of grace but are not ready for ascension into heaven, must wait in a long suffering limbo.

Eggs In Purgatory
Adapted from Nigellisma
Serve 1


1 tablespoon olive oil
1 small clove garlic (peeled)
1/4 teaspoon dried chilli flakes(1 tsp)
1x 400grams can chopped tomatoes(250g)
1/2 teaspoon sea salt flakes(normal sea salt)
1 or 2 large eggs(1 egg)
2 teaspoon grated parmesan or more as needed
1 splash of chilli oil (optional to serve)
2 slices white bread or your choice


  • Pour the olive oil into a frying pan, then grate in or mince and add the garlic, scatter in the chilli flakes and put the pan over a medium heat, stirring for 1 minute.

  • Tip in the tomatoes, stir in the salt,and let it come to a bubble. It's got to be hot enough to poach an egg in.

  • Crack in the egg, sprinkle the Parmesan over it, leaving some of the yellow yolk still exposed, and partially cover with a lid.

  • Let it bubble for 5 minutes, by which time the white should be set and the yolk still runny, but keep an eye on it.

  • Remove from the heat and serve - if so wished - sprinkled with a little more Parmesan and some chilli oil, and some bread to dunk in.

This post is linked to Little Thumbs Up "Egg' hosted by Baby Sumo, organised by Zoe and Doreen.
This is also linked to Cook Like A Star "Nigella Lawson' hosted by Anuja,  and organised by Zoe and Joyce.

Where their worm does not die and the fire is not quenched.  Matthew 9:48


  1. Hi Lian,
    I have made a different version, Shashuka and really love it. This looks delicious and so yummy with the toasted bread.
    Thanks for linking!

    1. Hi Joyce, I believe shashuka is the original version.

    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. Hi Lian, thanks for linking this to LTU! Last month, I made something similar too called Spanish Eggs, love the appetizing flavours. Yours look great!

    1. Hi Yen, love this dish. I came across a few versions too, all look great!

  3. Hi Lian,

    This looks delicious and so simple to make! Will give this a go for breakkie sometime!

    1. Emily, anytime you can make this easily:)

  4. Hi Lian, I've made something like this before and I really love it! I used lots of bread to mop up the tomato sauce and the oozy egg haha. Yours look so delicious that I want to try making it again!

    1. Hi Jasline, yes, there are many similar versions.

  5. Oh Lian, I like your poached egg :)

  6. oh so this is the same as shashuka? i've seen it in a few blogs couple of months back..i know i will love this!

    1. Hi Lena, I would say shashuka is the original, with Middle Eastern spices and feta cheese.

  7. Hi Lian,

    I have seen a few shashuka recipes and wanted to cook them for LTU, egg event but I didn't because my husband and son told me that they didn't like it when I showed them picture of these recipes.

    I like this recipe that you have cooked because it serves only one and this means that I can cook only for myself :D


  8. Hi Zoe, I cooked this for myself too. I don't know why my children don't fancy them.

  9. That looks yummy! I love eggs in tomato, so delicious to mop up with some toasted bread :)

  10. We like this food, and we like to invite you to upload your unusual delicious & unexplored recipe on Find best dishes at restaurants in Ahmedabad


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