The Kitchen Diva

Eggs are considered an almost perfect food, as whole eggs are nutritious and contain almost every nutrient you need to maintain good health, while keeping you feeling full between meals.

By Angela Shelf Medearis

Breakfast is my favorite meal of the day, and eggs are one of my favorite ingredients any time of the day! Eggs are a great way to start your day because they’re an almost perfect food. Whole eggs are nutritious and contain almost every nutrient you need to maintain good health, and they keep you feeling full between meals.

One large egg has 13 essential vitamins and minerals, and protein, all for 70 calories. While egg whites contain some of the high-quality protein, riboflavin and selenium, most of an egg’s beneficial properties are found in the yolk. Here are some vitamins and nutrients:

Vitamin D — critical for bone health and immune function. Eggs are one of the only foods that naturally contain vitamin D.

Lutein and zeaxanthin — antioxidants that are believed to reduce the risk of developing cataracts and slow the progression of age-related macular degeneration, a disease that develops with age and is one of the leading causes of blindness in older adults.

Choline — essential for normal functioning of all cells. Brain development and memory may be enhanced by the choline content of eggs, and the consumption of eggs is particularly important during pregnancy to support healthy brain development of the fetus.

Eggs are not only good for your health, but also good for your wallet! This inexpensive ingredient can be used in a variety of dishes as a source of protein for breakfast, lunch or dinner.

My Easy Supper Shakshuka is a popular dish with variations served in North Africa and the Eastern Mediterranean. It’s also known as Eggs in Purgatory because of the spicy sauce the eggs are cooked in.

This simple, versatile one-pan dish features eggs nestled in a flavorful tomato sauce enhanced with onions, garlic and spices, and sprinkled with Feta cheese. It can be served for breakfast or brunch right out of the pan with toast and breakfast sausage or bacon, or with a salad and crusty garlic bread for lunch or supper.

EASY SUPPER SHAKSHUKA

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 small onion, chopped

1 teaspoon red chile flakes or 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper or 1/4 teaspoon hot sauce

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon ground black pepper

1 teaspoon paprika

1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

1/8 teaspoon ground cloves or cinnamon

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 cups prepared marinara sauce

2 cups fresh baby spinach

4 eggs

1 1/2 cup feta cheese

Cilantro, basil or parsley leaves, chopped (optional)

1. In a large skillet over medium heat, add the olive oil, then add the chopped onion, the chile flakes or cayenne pepper or hot sauce, salt, pepper, paprika, cumin and cloves or cinnamon, and cook for 5 minutes, or until the onion becomes soft and translucent. Add the garlic and cook for another 1-2 minutes.

2. Stir in the marinara sauce and turn the heat to high to bring the sauce to a boil. Add the spinach, one handful at a time, and stir it in to wilt it.

3. Turn the heat to low. Using the back of a large spoon, make 4 indentions (wells) in the sauce to place the eggs. Gently crack the eggs in the skillet into the indentions in the tomato sauce and cover the skillet with a lid for 3 to 5 minutes, or until the whites of the eggs are cooked and set.

4. Sprinkle the feta cheese around the eggs and on top of the sauce. Garnish with the cilantro, basil or parsley, if desired, and serve warm with crusty bread or rolls to mop up the sauce. Serves 4.

Angela Shelf Medearis is an award-winning children’s author, culinary historian and the author of seven cookbooks. Her new cookbook is “The Kitchen Diva’s Diabetic Cookbook.” Her website is www.divapro.com. To see how-to videos, recipes and much, much more, Like Angela Shelf Medearis, The Kitchen Diva! on Facebook. Recipes may not be reprinted without permission from Angela Shelf Medearis.

© 2021 King Features Synd., Inc., and Angela Shelf Medearis

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