Cooks throughout the Middle East poach eggs in tomato sauce. Here, chef Michael Anthony introduces Italian flavors to the classic, like basil and Parmesan. Slideshow: Great Middle Eastern Recipes
Preheat the oven to 350°. In a large ovenproof skillet, heat the olive oil. Add the bacon, onion, garlic and chard stems and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until the stems are softened, about 5 minutes. Add the tomato sauce, dried basil and crushed red pepper and simmer until the sauce is thickened, about 15 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
Meanwhile, in a large pot of salted boiling water, blanch the chard leaves for 3 minutes. Drain and let cool slightly. Squeeze out the excess water. Form the chard leaves into 8 small piles and arrange them in the sauce around the side the skillet.
Crack the eggs into the skillet between the piles of chard. Transfer the pan to the oven and bake the eggs for 12 to 15 minutes, until the egg whites are just set and the yolks are still runny.
Transfer the skillet to a rack and sprinkle the cheese on top. Let stand for 5 minutes. Garnish the shakshuka with the sliced basil and serve immediately.
Lively, light-bodied red wine.
Made it for dinner this evening just as presented. No changes. It was delicious! Family enjoyed as well.