Adapted from The Mom 100 Cookbook, Katie Workman
A frittata is an Italian omelet to which the add-ins (potatoes, cheese, veggies, rice, what have you) are beaten directly into the eggs. Generally it’s cooked first on the stovetop, then finished under the broiler. Some people cook a frittata entirely on the stovetop, flipping it during the cooking process instead of transferring the unflipped frittata to the broiler. Frittatas are great warm, or at room temperature, happily hanging out for a couple of hours before being cut up and served. Ideal for brunch, they are a subtle way of saying “I’m not making individual omelets for all of you.” A good potluck notion and, when cut into small squares, a lovely hors d’oeuvre.
2 tablespoons (1⁄4 stick) unsalted butter
1 large waxy potato, such as white, red, or Yukon Gold, peeled, quartered, and thinly sliced
1 onion, quartered and very thinly sliced
1⁄2 teaspoon dried thyme, oregano, or basil, or 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme, oregano, or basil
Kosher or coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
10 large eggs
1⁄4 cup coarsely chopped fresh Italian (flat-leaf) parsley or basil (optional)
1⁄2 cup shredded or crumbled cheese, such as cheddar, provolone, Monterey Jack, mozzarella, feta, Parmesan, or goat cheese
Preheat the broiler with the rack set about 4 inches away from the heat source.
Melt the butter over medium heat in a medium-size (10-inch) broiler-proof skillet. Add the potato, onion, and the 1⁄2 teaspoon of dried thyme, oregano, or basil, if using, and season with salt and pepper to taste. Cover the skillet and cook the potato and onion until they are beginning to become tender, about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Reduce the heat if it seems like the vegetables are starting to burn. Uncover the skillet and cook the vegetables until they are tender and turning golden, about 4 minutes longer.
Meanwhile, place the eggs, parsley, and 1 teaspoon of fresh thyme, oregano, or basil, if using, in a medium-size bowl and whisk to combine well. Season the egg mixture with salt and pepper to taste. When the vegetables are ready, pour the eggs into the skillet and stir to combine everything. Let the frittata cook until the eggs start to set on the bottom. Reduce the heat to medium-low and, using a spatula, gently lift the edge of the frittata so that the uncooked eggs run underneath those that are set on the bottom. Do this every couple of minutes until the frittata is pretty much set on the bottom but the top and middle are still a bit runny.
Sprinkle the cheese over the top of the frittata and place the skillet under the broiler. Broil the frittata until it is set, the cheese is melted, and the whole top is lightly golden, 2 to 4 minutes. Remove the skillet from the broiler and let the frittata sit for a minute or two on a heatproof surface. Leave a dishtowel draped over the handle of the skillet to remind yourself that the handle is hot!
Run a spatula or knife around the edge of the skillet to loosen the frittata. You can cut it into wedges and serve it directly from the skillet. Or carefully slide the whole thing onto a serving plate, using a spatula to help guide the frittata out, then cut it into wedges.
Yield: Serves 6
This is Latin for “blank slate”, which is just to say that there are many, many possible combinations of ingredients for frittatas. It’s a great way to use up that extra cup of cooked veggies from the night before. Substitute shallots or scallions or leeks for the onion. Use three quarters of a cup of cooked rice or plain pasta instead of the potatoes; just stir the cooked rice or pasta into the eggs and pour it all into the skillet. Asparagus, broccoli, mushrooms, olives, scallions, tomatoes, zucchini, spinach—if you root around in your refrigerator you can probably find about ten things that would be great frittata fillings. If you are thinking about interesting combos, and not worrying about picky eaters, you could mix a dollop of pesto or tapenade or sun-dried tomato paste into the eggs.
Frittatas are just as delicious served at room temperature as hot. So, if you are feeding a bigger group, whisk up two or more, making one quite simple and others much more adventurous.
You can make a frittata a day ahead of time and store it well wrapped in the fridge. Serve it slightly chilled, at room temperature, or warm. To rewarm the frittata, unwrap it and heat it in a 350°F oven for ten minutes. You can also let it sit out covered at room temperature for up to six hours.
What the Kids Can Do:
Kids can pick the add-ins and beat them into the eggs. If they are old enough they can help cook the frittata with supervision.
Mini Frittatas: This is a kid-pleaser—frittatas in a muffin tin. It’s a bit more work to pour the mixture into the individual cups, but you actually save the hands-on cooking time on top of the stove, freeing you up to slice cantaloupe, or yell at the kids to set the table, or carve small swans out of radishes for garnishes.
Recipes: Dairy Dishes, Eggs, Cheese, Vegetables, Kosher