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Savory Spice Shop's Merken Shakshuka has a delicious southwestern twist. Photo courtesy of Savory Spice Shop

Tasty Tour: Savory Spice Shop

Watch co-owner Mike Johnston cook shakshuka (live!) and get a behind-the-scenes look at how a local company creates unique spice blends.

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In mid-January, I got an email that made me laugh out loud. It was from Suzanne Klein, the test kitchen manager at Savory Spice Shop, confirming our lunch the next day at Savory’s northeastern Denver production facility. “We’re planning a shakshuka cook-off,” Suzanne wrote. “We have a few recipe concepts and it would be fun to get your feedback on them. I hope you like eggs!”

What Suzanne didn’t know (then) was that not only do I not like eggs, I had written an essay on the topic in our February issue; it would hit newsstands within days. But since I didn’t want to be rude (or turn down a homemade meal), I told Suzanne that I was looking forward to our lunch. I should have known that she and Mike Johnston, co-owner of Savory Spice Shop (along with his wife and partner, Janet), would turn my polite sentiment into truth.

After my anti-egg confession, we deliberated over three styles of shakshuka—eggs baked in a thick tomato sauce—during that lunch, and toured the Savory facility, too. It was eye opening to learn how Mike, Janet, and their team create Savory’s proprietary spice blends, and fun to watch the spices being ground, mixed, and packed. In fact, we had such a good time, and the shakshuka was so delicious (despite the eggs!), we decided to recreate the experience for you through Facebook live.

We're live with Savory Spice Shop in the test kitchen learning to make shakshuka! Tour included!

Nai-post ni 5280 Magazine noong Miyerkules, Abril 19, 2017

SOUTHWESTERN CHORIZO SHAKSHUKA
Savory Spice Shop gives shakshuka (eggs baked in tomato sauce) a southwestern twist by using Merken, a Chilean-inspired chile seasoning. They top it with a quick-and-easy tomatillo salsa with a hint of lime (recipe below), which cools down the heat from the chorizo and chili powder. Garnish with the salsa, cilantro, and parsley, and serve with tortillas.

Serves 4

7 to 8 ounces mild ground chorizo
2 pounds Roma tomatoes, coarsely chopped
1/2 large white onion, chopped
1 (8-ounce) can tomato sauce
1 tablespoon Mapuche-Style Merkén seasoning
1/4 teaspoon dehydrated minced garlic
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro, plus 2 tablespoons for garnish
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh parsley, plus 2 tablespoons for garnish
4 to 6 large eggs
Salt and pepper
4 ounces queso Chihuahua, cubed (or similar melting cheese, like Monterey Jack)
1/2 cup Fresh Salsa Verde (see recipe below)
Tortillas, for serving

  1. Preheat the oven to 350° degrees.
  2. Brown the chorizo in a large, ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat for about 5 minutes. (Add 1 tablespoon vegetable oil if the chorizo is very lean.) Use a slotted spoon to transfer the chorizo to a plate.
  3. Add the tomatoes and onions to the skillet with the chorizo drippings, stirring to scrape up any chorizo bits. Lower the heat to medium and cook for 5 to 7 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the tomatoes soften and release their juices.
  4. Stir in the tomato sauce, Merken Seasoning, garlic, 1/4 cup each cilantro and parsley, and cooked chorizo. Bring to a soft boil and cook, uncovered, for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the sauce thickens slightly.
  5. Use a serving spoon to make a shallow crater in the sauce and crack an egg into the crater. Repeat with the remaining eggs, keeping them a couple inches apart. Season the eggs with salt and pepper to taste. Nestle cubes of the queso into the sauce around the eggs.
  6. Transfer the skillet to oven and bake, uncovered, for 12 to 15 minutes, or until the egg yolks are just set and the whites are no longer translucent. Remove from oven and serve.

FRESH SALSA VERDE
This super fresh, tangy salsa from Savory Spice Shop’s test kitchen comes together in no time and tastes way better than store-bought. Green tomatoes can be used in place of tomatillos, and feel free to adjust the jalapeño amount based on how much heat you like.

Makes about 2 1/2 cups

1 pound tomatillos, husked, rinsed, and quartered
1 large shallot, chopped
1/2 to 1 jalapeño, seeded and chopped
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
1/8 tsp. dehydrated minced garlic
1/2 tsp. makrut lime sea salt

  1. Place the tomatillos, shallot, jalapeño, cilantro, and garlic into a food processor and pulse until coarsely chopped.
  2. Transfer to a medium bowl and mix in the lime salt. Serve cold or at room temperature.

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