Starting your day with shakshuka is the best way to warm your stomach while also brightening up your palate. The traditional Israeli breakfast dish consists of poached eggs in a tangy, spicy sauce, made from tomatoes, onions, and peppers. Three different kinds of paprika go into it, lending a hint of smokiness to tempt your tastebuds.
It’s the ultimate sauce for bread-dipping.
In Israel, the bread of choice is pita, soft and chewy and with enough heft to scoop up the chunky sauce. The restaurant 12 Chairs Cafe, which has been a SoHo mainstay for more than 10 years, serves authentic pita imported from Israel.
Pita is also traditionally eaten with falafel and hummus. Here, the falafels are a vibrant green, from the fresh herbs inside, while the hummus is thick and lightly dressed with olive oil and paprika to let the pure taste of the chickpeas come through.
Another zesty breakfast dish is the Israeli salad: chopped cucumbers, tomatoes, and red onions tossed in a sunny combination of olive oil, lemon, and cumin. The fun part is in the rest of the platter: eggs and an assortment of spreads like Bulgarian feta, olive tapenade, labneh (strained yogurt), and pesto, for mixing and matching the different flavors and textures.
12 Chairs Cafe
56 MacDougal St., SoHo
342 Wythe Ave., Brooklyn
Breakfast served all day
8 a.m.–11 p.m.