An acquaintance on a cooking group passed along this recipe for Turkish scrambled eggs when I mentioned that my dad had given me a lot of fresh tomatoes from his garden, and I was wondering how I would manage to use them all up before they spoiled. I looked at the recipe with trepidation at first, since it sounded exotic and therefore complicated. But not only was it easy to make, it was delicious to eat!
After some research, I found out that menemen is considered the ultimate comfort food in Turkey all year, but it’s especially popular in the summer and fall when garden-fresh tomatoes are plentiful. Some purists make menemen with only tomatoes, spices, and a little Feta cheese sprinkled on top, while others add onions and peppers for extra flavor.
1/4 cup olive oil
1 medium onion, peeled and diced (about 10 ounces)
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon pepper
salt, to taste
1 banana or Anaheim pepper, seeded and chopped
1 cup peeled chopped fresh tomato (or about 7 ounces canned tomatoes with juices)
4 large eggs
2 tablespoons dried parsley
1 tablespoon butter or margarine
Feta cheese for garnish (optional)
1. Heat oil in large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add onion, seasoned with oregano and salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, about eight minutes.
2. Add banana pepper and cook about six more minutes, or till soft.
3. While onions and peppers are cooking, puree half of the tomatoes in a food processor or blender.
4. When onions and peppers are soft, add remaining chopped tomatoes to skillet. Stir in parsley and butter or margarine. Reduce heat to low.
5. Crack eggs into large bowl. Add pureed tomatoes and whisk till foamy.
6. Pour eggs and tomatoes over top of mixture in skillet. Cook, stirring occasionally, three or four minutes. Eggs will be set but still soft. Taste, adding more salt, oregano, or pepper as needed.
7. Serve directly from skillet with toasted pitas or other flatbread. Sprinkle with feta cheese, if desired. Enjoy!
Jo Elizabeth Pinto was among the first blind students to integrate the public schools in the 1970’s. In 1992, she received a degree in Human Services from the University of Northern Colorado. While teaching students how to use adaptive technology, she earned a second degree in 2004 from the Metropolitan State College of Denver in Nonprofit Management. These days, she freelances as an editor and a braille proofreader.
As an author, Pinto entertains her readers while giving them food for thought. In her fiction, nonfiction, and poetry, she draws on personal experience to illustrate that hope is always an action away.
Pinto lives in Colorado with her husband, her teenage daughter, her brindle black Labrador guide dog Spreckles, and an aging family cat called Sam-I-Am. To find out more about her, including her award-winning novel and her two books of memoirs, available in audio, Kindle, and paperback formats, please visit her author Website at https://www.brightsideauthor.com.