Fresh, inventive Israeli food has never been more popular, thanks to chefs like London’s Yotam Ottolenghi and more recently, Toronto-based Danielle Oron. Her new cookbook, Modern Israeli Cooking, is a collection of vibrant new spins on Mediterranean classics, plus recipes from her Israeli-Moroccan upbringing that you’ll make over and over again. Try this updated take on sabich, a sandwich of fried eggplant and hard-boiled eggs with plenty of fixings. Everything’s better in a big hearty bowl.
Normally packed in a pita, this is a traditional Iraqi Jewish Shabbat breakfast. It consists of fried eggplant and hard-boiled eggs, but then it’s surrounded with tahini, amba, schug, Israeli salad, pickles, etc. It’s an everything sandwich. I wanted to make it into a breakfast bowl, so I did. Instead of a hard-boiled egg, a soft one takes its place. #yolkporn
- 1 large eggplant
- Coarse kosher salt
- 1 Kirby cucumber, diced
- 1 Roma tomato, diced
- 1 tablespoon chopped parsley
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- salt to taste
- 4 eggs
- canola oil for frying
- 2 russet potatoes, peeled
- 1 1/2 tablespoons canola oil
- 1/2 yellow onion, sliced
- Pinch paprika
- Salt and fresh black pepper to taste
- Amba, store-bought
- Israeli pickles, sliced
- chopped parsley
For the bowls
Slice the eggplant into ½ -inch-thick slices. Lay them on a paper-towel-lined baking sheet. Sprinkle both sides with a generous amount of coarse kosher salt and let rest for about 10 minutes while the moisture is extracted from the eggplant.
To make the salad, toss the cucumber, tomato, parsley, lemon juice and salt and set in the fridge until ready to serve.
To make the soft-boiled eggs, bring a pot of water to a rolling boil and prepare a bowl filled with ice water. Slowly lower each egg into the water, taking care not to break them. Boil for exactly 6 minutes. Immediately remove the eggs from the boiling water and place into the ice bath to shock them and stop the cooking. Leave them in the ice bath for 4 minutes. Gently and carefully peel the eggs and set aside.
Preheat the oven to 180˚F. Brush away the salt from the eggplant slices. Cut them into ½-inch cubes.
In a large frying pan, heat ¼ inch of canola oil over medium heat. Fry the eggplants, turning as they brown, until golden, about 3 minutes. Drain them on a paper-towel-lined baking sheet. Do this in batches and season the eggplant with salt as soon as they come out of the oil. Remove the paper towel and put the eggplant in the oven to keep warm.
To make the potato hash, grate the potatoes. Place the grated potatoes on a few sheets of paper towel or a clean kitchen towel, pressing with another paper towel on top to remove as much of the moisture as possible from the potatoes. Really press on them.
Heat a large skillet with the canola oil over medium heat. Add in the onions and sauté for 2-3 minutes until softened. Add in the grated potatoes and toss to coat the potatoes with a bit of the oil. Season with paprika, salt and fresh black pepper to taste, and toss again. Fry for 4-5 minutes, tossing only once until golden brown and cooked through. The potatoes will stick together slightly; that is a thumbs-up.
Plate the bowls by placing the potato hash at the bottom, and top with the eggplant and Israeli salad. Drizzle a decent amount of tahini over everything. Place the soft-boiled egg on top and cut in half. Serve with amba, Israeli pickles and chopped parsley.