You know those times when you look in the fridge and think, “meh”. You might have a little bit of this and a little leftover that but seemingly not enough of any one thing to actually make something? Well, that’s me about 75% of the time.
While I definitely get inspired and enjoy the process of shopping and cooking (and photographing and blogging), there are many more days when I’m just really busy and can’t even think about what to make for dinner until I’m fifteen minutes past being really bloody hungry.
That’s when I like to make a fritatta. Seriously, you can pretty much throw anything in it and it will work. (Edible, anything edible). Have a potato or two? Great, chop it up! A bag (or frozen box) of spinach? That’ll work. Weird little bits of several kinds of cheeses? Why not. No one’s looking. As we say in Brooklyn, “do you”. (I’m so, so sorry).
The great thing about a fritatta is that as long as you have enough eggs to bind it all together, pretty much anything is going to work. Sure, you have to think a bit about what flavors go together. That really stinky, pungent bleu cheese may not work so well with, say, shrimp but would be delicious with bacon and onion (and shrimp would be fantastic with corn and scallions). Just think about what you have available, what tastes good together and don’t overthink it.
This particular recipe is just what I had on hand (and it’s a nice combo) but you should feel free to substitute any ingredient you want (except the eggs, of course).
- Roasted red peppers
- Broccoli (or broccolini)
- Chard or kale
- Shredded chicken, pork or beef
- Leftover rice or pasta
- Sausage or pancetta
- Cheeses (good melting ones like cheddar, chèvre, mozzarella, fontina, gruyere)
- Herbs (soft ones like basil, parsley, chives, thyme, oregano or tarragon)
- Spices (smoked paprika, cumin, chile)
- Everything (especially meats) should be fully cooked before you add the eggs.
- Steam or sauté any thinly sliced (or small cubed) veggies you want but don’t forget to season them well with salt and pepper.
- Dice, cube or shred everything to roughly the same size.
- If throwing everything into one pan, add ingredients in order of how long they take to cook (potatoes take longer than chard, for instance).
- If you’re using fully cooked leftovers, just toss them in before the eggs.
Potato, Spinach and Cheese Frittata
- 8 large eggs
- 2 tablespoons chives or other herb
- 3 tablespoons grated parmesan
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 4-5 slices bacon chopped (optional)
- 1 pound potatoes cut into 1/2 inch cubes
- 2 tablespoons olive oil divided
- 1 small onion or 2 shallots chopped
- 2 garlic cloves finely chopped
- 2 to 3 cups baby spinach coarsely chopped (if using frozen, defrost and squeeze out liquid)
- 3 ounces sharp cheddar cheese grated
- 1 1/2 ounces goat cheese crumbled (optional)
- Preheat broiler.
- Whisk together eggs, herbs, parmesan, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper in a large bowl.
- If using, cook bacon in a 10-inch heavy skillet (cast-iron or non-stick) over medium heat, stirring, until crisp. Transfer bacon with a slotted spoon to a large bowl then pour off all but 2 tablespoons fat.
- Add potatoes and 1/4 teaspoon each of salt and pepper to skillet, and sauté over medium-high heat until lightly brown, about 5 minutes. Cover skillet and continue to cook over medium-low heat, stirring a few times, until potatoes are just tender, about 3 minutes more. Transfer the potatoes with a slotted spoon to bowl containing the bacon.
- Add 1 tablespoon oil to skillet and sauté onion over medium-high heat until pale golden, about 4 minutes, then add and garlic and cook for 1 minute more. Add spinach and sauté until just wilted.
- Stir in the potatoes and bacon, and remaining tablespoon oil into onion mixture, spreading it evenly.
- Pour egg mixture evenly over vegetables and cook over medium-high heat, lifting up cooked egg around edges with a heat-proof rubber spatula to let uncooked egg flow underneath, 2 to 3 minutes. Reduce heat to medium and cook, covered, until it appears mostly set, with a moist top and center, 3 to 5 minutes more.
- Remove lid. Broil frittata 5 to 7 inches from heat until set, but not too brown, 1 to 2 minutes, then top with an even layer of cheese and continue to broil until browned and bubbling, 1 to 3 minutes (watch carefully). If using goat cheese, add at the last minute of broiling.
- Either slide the frittata onto a serving plate or cut and serve wedges directly from the skillet.