Friday, February 04, 2011

D-Feast Friday: You Say Frittato, I Say Frittata

(OK, as far as I know, nobody says "frittato". It's my title. Deal.)

Breakfasts are a problem for me. For some reason, I want a breakfast to be breakfast, real breakfast - eggs, bacon or sausage, stuff like that. I can live without pancakes or waffles, but I don't really want yogurt. Breakfast cereals are okay, but most of them (meaning all the ones I've tried that I really want to eat) do terrible things to my blood glucose. A protein shake will have my tummy gurgling by 10:30. Plus, I'm not really organized in the morning, so I need breakfast to be fast to prepare and fast to eat.

A year or so ago, I started occasionally seeing a dish called a "frittata" on cooking shows. It's kinda sorta like an omelet, but (in the American version, anyway), there's no fussy turning or folding to screw up: instead, it's finished in the oven. And it can contain about anything that doesn't need additional cooking or will cook quickly.

A couple of weeks ago, having acquire an oven-safe pan, I tried it and loved it. I've now made three, and anticipate making many more.

Here's a real recipe. My procedure, adapted from Mark Bittman, is as follows.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Mix 6-8 eggs up with whatever you want to add, remembering the no-cook/quick-cook rule above. I use a pint carton of Egg Beaters. My mix usually has salt, pepper, some cheese and some cooked potato -- see other suggestons below. Melt two tablespoons of butter in an oven-safe skillet (that is, one that has a handle that won't melt). (It would probably help to start with some cooking spray in the pan: I have yet to remember to do this.) When the butter is melted, pour in the egg mix. (At this point, you can toss in any fillings that you want to add evenly, like the bits of kimchee I tried once, or maybe capers.)

Cook on the stove top until the edges seem set - in my pan, anyway, the edges pull a bit away from the edge of the pan. Put it in the oven until the top is just set and remove from oven, remembering that the pan handle is now very hot.

(Note: I understand that in Italy, they flip the thing in the pan using a plate as a temporary landing place rather than using the oven. If that interests you, go for it.)

Carefully remove the frittata from the pan with a spatula. I tend to work around the thing from the outside edge. I have yet to do this maneuver perfectly, but it's always gone reasonably well.

Since I started doing this, my breakfast on most days is a quarter frittata placed on a "sandwich thin" and put in the microwave for 30 seconds. Very satisfying.

My fillings so far have been kind of random, but I'm eager to try the following combinations that I've thought of:

"Greek" frittata -- slices of a nice olive or two, feta cheese.

American Dinner frittata - a sprinkling of cooked diced potatoes or hashbrowns, a little cooked sausage and/or bacon, onion.

Lox Special frittata - bits of smoked salmon, bits of cream cheese, onion, maybe a bit of diced tomatoes, capers.

Give it a try.


  1. This sounds great - I like the idea of sandwiching them too.
    And yes, I've burned my hand making frittatas by thinking grabbing that burning hot handle would not be an issue at all.

  2. YUM!!!! and it's healthy! Love your title by the way!

    Thanks for sharing :)

  3. I LOVE frittatas. And I can picture it with spinach and crumbled feta, maybe some sun-dried tomatoes. Now I just need to figure out whether or not my pan is oven-safe....

  4. Mmmmm, this sounds fabulous. And I'm totally calling them frittatos from now on. :)


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T Minus Two by Bob Pedersen is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.