Scrambled Eggs with Cherry Tomatoes and Harissa

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Scrambled-Eggs-HarissaHarissa is a wonderfully flavorful paste of chiles and spices originally from Tunisia. There are thousands of variations—some of them more mild and savory, some of them tear-inducingly spicy. This harissa falls somewhere in the middle—its heat is assertive, but it won’t reduce you to tears. I’m smitten with harissa’s rich, smoky flavor and slather it generously on vegetables and fish. I’m also fond of a generous dollop of Greek yogurt on my eggs. Here, the two come together with the concentrated sweetness of cherry tomatoes and soft, creamy scrambled eggs.

6 large dried chiles, such as New Mexico or guajillo
6 dried chipotle chiles
8 dry-packed sun-dried tomatoes
1 teaspoon whole caraway seeds
1 teaspoon whole coriander seeds
1 teaspoon whole cumin seeds
1 large clove garlic, minced
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon fine sea salt
8 eggs
Freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
Plain Greek yogurt, for serving
2 cups halved or quartered cherry tomatoes
Flaky sea salt, such as Maldon, for serving

To make the harissa, place the chiles and sun-dried tomatoes in a large bowl and cover with boiling water. Cover and let sit until softened, about 30 minutes.

In a dry pan over medium heat, toast the caraway seeds, coriander seeds, and cumin seeds until fragrant and beginning to brown, about 2 minutes, stirring regularly. Finely grind the spices using a mortar and pestle or a spice grinder.

When the chiles and sun-dried tomatoes are soft, drain them. Wearing gloves to protect your hands, remove and discard the seeds and stems of the chiles. Place the chiles and sun-dried tomatoes in a food processor. Add the ground spices, garlic, olive oil, lemon juice, wine vinegar, and salt. Pulse until well combined. Set aside. This recipe will make more harissa than is needed. Refrigerate the extra in a tightly sealed jar, with a thin layer of olive oil drizzled on top, for up to a month.

Whisk the eggs with a pinch each of salt and pepper. In a large skillet over low heat, melt the butter. Add the eggs and cook, pushing them gently toward the center of the pan with a spoon. Keep the eggs moving so that they cook consistently. Remove the pan from the heat just before the eggs are cooked through; they will still look a bit glossy, but will continue to cook. Divide among four plates. Top with a smear of yogurt, a dollop of harissa, and a generous handful of cherry tomatoes. Garnish with flaky sea salt and pepper. Serve hot.

Serves 4

Reprinted with permission from Vibrant Food written and photographed by Kimberley Hasselbrink (Ten Speed Press, © 2014).


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