Saturday, August 6, 2011

Farmer's Market Frittata

Frittatas are definitely one of my favorite things to create.  Once you have the basic technique down, you really don’t need a recipe and they’re quick and versatile!  Such a healthy and delicious way to start or end the day!  I love them for brunch with warm muffins, fresh fruit and maybe a mimosa, or for a simple supper with a field greens salad and some crostada. This one is packed with fresh, local Farmer’s Market finds, but I often just clean out my veggie and cheese drawers and just use what I have.  Frittatas sound fancy but really, they’re much easier than an omelet, yet somehow more elegant?  You can add leftover pasta or shredded potatoes for texture, some protein in the form of ham, salmon, bacon, or sausage, and any number of cheeses, herbs and vegetables.  Be creative!

6 whole eggs
3 egg whites
3 Tbsp lowfat milk
2 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves removed from stalks
1 ½ Tbsp olive oil
¼ yellow onion, chopped
½ red pepper, chopped
½ cup zucchini, chopped
1 cup mushrooms, chopped
1 cup fresh spinach, rough chopped
¼ cup crumbled goat cheese
¼ cup grated parmesan cheese
¼ cup chopped parsley and/or basil
Salt and pepper to taste
1 ½ cups cherry tomatoes, cut in half

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Chop the vegetables and set aside.  Break the eggs and egg whites in a large bowl and mix with the milk and thyme.  Whisk until fluffy and season lightly with salt and pepper.  Heat the olive oil over medium high heat in a large, over-safe nonstick saut√© or paella pan, add the onions, mushrooms, peppers, and zucchini and season with salt and pepper.  Saute for about 2-3 minutes, until the vegetables are soft.  Add the spinach and continue to cook until wilted.  Spread the vegetables out fairly evenly across the pan with a heatproof rubber spatula and then pour in the egg mixture.  Do not stir!  Use the spatula to lift the eggs at the edges and swirl the uncooked egg mixture towards the outside of the pan.  Continue doing this around the edges of the pan for 2-3 more minutes until the egg mixture is about ½ way cooked.  Add the cheese on top and place the pan in the preheated oven for 5 minutes.  Check the frittata which should look mostly done at this point, slightly puffy, and not too wiggly.  Switch the oven to the Broil setting and keep pan under the broiler for a couple more minutes to really melt the cheese and brown the frittata.  Remove from the oven and immediately add the halved cherry tomatoes.  The heat from the frittata will nicely soften and warm the cut tomatoes this way.   Add the herbs and season with just a touch more salt and pepper, just before serving.  An easy way to serve this is to use a pizza cutter and a spatula to cut wedges.  You can also slide the whole frittata onto a platter first for an elegant presentation for a group.  This dish is great hot or even warm and it also reheats very well for a quick midweek breakfast treat.  Enjoy!

This article was first published as Farmer's Market Frittata on Blogcritics. 

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