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More Nigella recipes

Strapatsada

by . Featured in SIMPLY NIGELLA
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Introduction

This is a Greek recipe - actually, strictly speaking, it's Italian, or of Italian derivation: strapazzare meaning, in the context of eggs, "to scramble". And really that's what this is: eggs scrambled with tomatoes. I was initially hesitant about this, as the notion of tomatoes mixed into scrambled eggs didn't seem appealing. But the thing is, it doesn't quite taste like that. This is what cooking is all about: what the ingredients do together in the pan, not what they sound like on the page. A simple alchemy.

I am reliably informed that the cheese you would eat with it is Xynotyro, but since there's no way I have of getting my hands on that in my neighbourhood, I go for Wensleydale as the closest substitute available locally. What you want is a sharp and salty cheese that will crumble and melt a little, if that helps.

For US cup measures, use the toggle at the top of the ingredients list.

This is a Greek recipe - actually, strictly speaking, it's Italian, or of Italian derivation: strapazzare meaning, in the context of eggs, "to scramble". And really that's what this is: eggs scrambled with tomatoes. I was initially hesitant about this, as the notion of tomatoes mixed into scrambled eggs didn't seem appealing. But the thing is, it doesn't quite taste like that. This is what cooking is all about: what the ingredients do together in the pan, not what they sound like on the page. A simple alchemy.

I am reliably informed that the cheese you would eat with it is Xynotyro, but since there's no way I have of getting my hands on that in my neighbourhood, I go for Wensleydale as the closest substitute available locally. What you want is a sharp and salty cheese that will crumble and melt a little, if that helps.

For US cup measures, use the toggle at the top of the ingredients list.

Image of Nigella's Strapatsada
Photo by Keiko Oikawa

Ingredients

Serves: 2

Metric Cups
  • 8 small (not cherry) tomatoes
  • 3 x 15ml tablespoons regular olive oil
  • 1 x 15ml tablespoon tomato puree
  • pinch of salt
  • pinch of sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 25 grams xynotyro cheese or sharp, salty, crumbly cheese such as wensleydale cheese or feta cheese
  • 1 small handful basil leaves or leaves stripped from a few sprigs of thyme
  • 4 slices good bread such as sourdough, or whatever you like
  • 8 small (not cherry) tomatoes
  • 3 tablespoons regular olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon tomato puree
  • pinch of salt
  • pinch of sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 ounce xynotyro cheese or sharp, salty, crumbly cheese such as wensleydale cheese or feta cheese
  • 1 small handful basil leaves or leaves stripped from a few sprigs of thyme
  • 4 slices good bread such as sourdough, or whatever you like

Method

  1. Cut the tomatoes in half - a Greek person would now cut out the cores; this English person is too lazy - and then cut them into rough chunks.
  2. Warm the oil in a heavy-based frying pan (I use a cast-iron pan of 25cm diameter, heating the pan before adding the oil) and tumble in the chunks of tomato. Cook, stirring every now and again, for about 5 minutes, by which time the tomatoes will have started to break down into the oil and be oozing oranginess. If you want your bread toasted, now's the time.
  3. Add the tomato puree, salt and sugar, and cook for another 5 minutes, by which time the tomato skins will be coming away from the flesh. Crack in the eggs and then stir, just as if you were scrambling them, until they are creamy, which is hardly any time at all (obviously, if you like your scrambled eggs set, cook the egg and tomato mixture here for longer).
  4. Take the pan off the heat, crumble the salty cheese over the mixture and sprinkle with the basil or thyme leaves. Dollop some on your toast, or just eat straight from the pan using bread as your cutlery. For the record, I have one helping on toast, and another with just the bread. There's enough for 4 slices of bread here, but if you're eating solo and can't finish it all (really?), then know that this is also fabulous cold.
  1. Cut the tomatoes in half - a Greek person would now cut out the cores; this English person is too lazy - and then cut them into rough chunks.
  2. Warm the oil in a heavy-based frying pan (I use a cast-iron pan of 25cm diameter, heating the pan before adding the oil) and tumble in the chunks of tomato. Cook, stirring every now and again, for about 5 minutes, by which time the tomatoes will have started to break down into the oil and be oozing oranginess. If you want your bread toasted, now's the time.
  3. Add the tomato puree, salt and sugar, and cook for another 5 minutes, by which time the tomato skins will be coming away from the flesh. Crack in the eggs and then stir, just as if you were scrambling them, until they are creamy, which is hardly any time at all (obviously, if you like your scrambled eggs set, cook the egg and tomato mixture here for longer).
  4. Take the pan off the heat, crumble the salty cheese over the mixture and sprinkle with the basil or thyme leaves. Dollop some on your toast, or just eat straight from the pan using bread as your cutlery. For the record, I have one helping on toast, and another with just the bread. There's enough for 4 slices of bread here, but if you're eating solo and can't finish it all (really?), then know that this is also fabulous cold.

Tell us what you think

What 4 Others have said

  • How can something so simple be so scrumptious? The whole of this dish is so much greater than the sum of its parts. The tomatoes tasted really concentrated and paired perfectly with the softly scrambled eggs. I used feta and basil and piled it on crunchy, whole-grain toast. It tasted incredible! I will make this over and over!

    Posted by joshv41680 on 3rd February 2021
  • In Cyprus we use hallumi instead of Xynotiro. Not the hard type of hallumi, which is also saltier than then softer one. We also add dry speermint a herb often used in Cypriot dishes

    Posted by Anthec on 17th June 2020
  • Made this tonight - it’s simple but sublime. I added a pinch of minced garlic too. My teenagers loved it as well!

    Posted by Marstar5280 on 14th June 2020
  • When we were young, our mother used to make something similar, she also added sliced onion to it, but no cheese. In those days, Italian or Greek food wasn't available in our little Flemish village. I still make it now and again, next time maybe I'll skip the onion and add cheese instead. It sounds delicious.

    Posted by Clairette on 13th June 2020
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