Posted by: A Part of the Solution | January 12, 2013

Hakuna Frittata

What I admire about a frittata is how it shows up so delightfully at a hearty breakfast. It’s welcome at a good lunch. It’s the star at a simple dinner. Frittata is a dish for all seasons. If you’re watching your cholesterol, you want free roaming chickens to have laid the eggs you use to make your frittata. Well, you want those eggs anyway—as they’re noticeably tastier, more structurally sound, and ethically defensible.

Frittata is one of those dishes so dear to my heart where all the ingredients go further, so you don’t need so much of any one thing to make the whole dish rich and varied. Speaking of varied, you can vary the ingredients based on what you happen to have in the fridge. Try to have something green, something red and something allium in your finished frittata–and you’ll cover yourself with honor when you serve it.

Hakuna Frittata 

3 medium potatoes, sliced thinly but not peeled–any kind of potato

1 1/2 cups broccoli florets, no larger than 1 1/4 inches each (and not too much stem please)–or a cup of peas, or green beans in 1 inch segments, or 1 1/2 cups sliced zucchini–if you can remember to halve the zucchini longwise and scrape out the seeds before slicing, or a box of frozen spinach—thawed, drained and squeezed, or a bunch of fresh spinach–rinsed, stemmed and sliced thinly (which like the frozen spinach won’t need any blanching)

3 Tablespoons of oil or fat–unless you’re using non-stick and then you can get away with only one

1 large bell pepper, seeded and sliced thinly—any color, although red, orange and yellow are great, or you could use a handful of medium hot peppers, carefully seeded (like red jalapenos, or cherry bombs or hilkenhats), or 2 large carrots, sliced thinly, or leftover cooked, diced beets or 1 1/2 cups of red cabbage sliced finely

1 large shallot, sliced thinly or 1 medium onion, or the white part of 1 leek, or a small bunch of green onions

1 teaspoon herbs de Provence, or thyme, or 2 Tablespoons minced fresh Basil

6 eggs

1/4 cup, 2 ounces, milk

1-3 teaspoons hot sauce, adjust to your preference, but a little kick in the frittata will balance it nicely

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

2 Tablespoons minced parsley

2–4 ounces of coarsely grated cheese–strongly flavored is preferred, or the same amount of crumbled feta

Preheat the oven to 400° F.

In a medium saucepan, cover the sliced potatoes with water and add some salt (like a teaspoon). Cover the pan and bring the potatoes to a boil over medium high heat. Turn the heat down and let the potatoes simmer for four minutes. Drain the potatoes (and you can save the water for baking, but do remember it’s already salted).

In a small saucepan put 1/4 inch of water. Add your green veggies and a pinch of salt. Cover the pan and bring it to the boil over medium high heat. After one minute, turn off the heat and drain the veggies.

Meanwhile, in your 10 inch, oven-safe sauté pan–I’m a cast iron girl, myself–heat the oil over a medium flame. Add your ‘red’ veggie and your alliums, ie the onion family member. Cook these for five minutes. Now add the dried or fresh herb. Give the pan a stir and let the herbs become fragrant.

In a large bowl, beat the eggs with the milk, the hot sauce, the parsley, and the salt and pepper.

Stir the potatoes and the green veggies into the sauté pan. Let them become fully hot. Pour the egg mixture over the veggies, tilting the pan to be sure the eggs get everywhere. Sprinkle the grated, crumbled, cheese over the top. Put the pan in the oven and cook the frittata for 20-25 minutes. It should have crisp browning all the way around the rim and browned bubbles from the toasting cheese in the middle. Let the frittata cool slightly for 10 minutes, so that no one burns their mouth on the cheese.

This serves eight at a hearty breakfast, six at a brunch and four for supper. Add a big salad, crusty bread (or a nice breakfast bread), a coarse white wine–if it’s not breakfast time, obviously, and fruit to finish. You’ll have a memorable meal.

And you can prep the potatoes, green veg, par-cooked red veg and allium all ahead for ease of assembly.

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