Shakshuka-Style Hake Pitas with Fennel Tzatziki and Olive Tapenade

Inspired by the diverse cultures of the Mediterranean – North-Africa, Greece and France – this dish is a true Mediterranean feast! The tender hake fillets are steamed on top of the tomato base and then gently flaked into the sauce. The homemade pita pockets are then filled with the rich spicy fish sauce, salty olive tapenade and creamy tzatziki – perfect for lunch or dinner!


Serves 4


Difficulty: A little effort

Preparation time: 50 minutes

Cooking time: 25 minutes



30ml (2 tbsp) double cream yoghurt

160ml (⅔ cup) milk

45ml (3 tbsp) olive oil

5ml (1 tsp) salt

5ml (1 tsp) baking powder

500ml (2 cups / 240g) white bread flour



45ml (3 tbsp) olive oil

125ml (½ cup) onion, diced

3 (12g) cloves garlic, finely chopped

60ml (¼ cup) Jalapeños, diced

2.5ml (½ tsp) ground coriander

2.5ml (½ tsp) sumac

2.5ml (½ tsp) ground cumin

2.5ml (½ tsp) ground fennel

2.5ml (½ tsp) ground turmeric

2.5ml (½ tsp) chilli flakes

5ml (1 tsp) salt

10ml (2 tsp) lemon juice

½ (200g) can tinned tomatoes

15ml (1 tbsp) tomato paste

200g Pescanova Namibian hake fillets



125ml (½ cup) black olives, pitted

75ml (5 tbsp) olive oil

10ml (2 tsp) lemon juice

2 anchovy fillets

2.5ml (½ tsp) capers



250ml (1 cup) cucumber, grated

125ml (½ cup) double cream yoghurt

5ml (1 tsp) lemon juice

2.5ml (½ tsp) salt

5ml (1 tsp) fennel, finely chopped + extra, to serve



4 lime wedges


  1. Pre-heat the oven to 240˚
  2. For the pitas, whisk all of the ingredients together, except for the flour. Slowly add the flour to form a dough. Knead on a clean surface, 2 minutes. Cover and set aside to rise, 30 minutes.
  3. Divide the dough into 4 equal parts. Shape the dough into balls. Roll each ball out to a round disc with a thickness of 0.5cm. Arrange on a baking tray and bake, 5 minutes. Cool.
  4. For the shakshuka hake, heat the oil in a pot over medium heat. Add the onions, garlic and jalapeños and sauté, 5 minutes. Stir in the coriander, sumac, cumin, fennel, turmeric, chilli flakes and salt. Add the lemon juice, tinned tomatoes and tomato paste. Place the fish on top of the sauce, skin-side down, turn the heat down to low and cover with a lid. Simmer, 10 minutes.
  5. Remove the fish skins, flake and add it back in with the sauce.
  6. For the tapenade, place all of the ingredients in a food processor and blend until smooth, 2 minutes.
  7. For the tzatziki, press out any excess liquid from the grated cucumbers and combine with the rest of the ingredients.
  8. To serve, cut the pitas open and spread the tapenade on the inside of each pita. Spoon the fish shakshuka inside and top with a dollop of tzatziki. Serve the pitas topped with more chopped fennel and with lime wedges on the side.


TIP: For a quick meal option when time is of the essence, replace the homemade pitas with shop bought pitas instead.


Wine pairing: Riesling, Simonsberg Paarl region


Recipe by: Megan Barnard

Image by: Ruben Steyn

Wine pairing by: Daniel de Vos