We cook and post about so many frittatas around here we should rename the site "Oui, Frittata".
What can I say….we're such huge fans of these Italian sorta quichey-omelette things that we're always thinking up new versions to share. Never had one before and wondering what they're like? Picture a crustless quiche or an unfolded omelette, and you pretty much have a frittata.
They are perfect vehicles for using up all sorts of leftovers from the fridge, are great for breakfast, lunch or dinner, and slices re-heat beautifully in the microwave for a healthy, hot snack when you're in a hurry. I never teach a Cooking Matters class without instructing my students on how to make a frittata as they are infinitely flexible, easy on the wallet, and can be vegetarian friendly.
In fact, it was this last point that prompted me to make this most recent egg pie. While I am happy to accommodate our pescatarian, Peyton, by cooking her non-meat based proteins on evenings when the rest of us are eating chicken, steak or pork, I'd much rather cook one entree that satisfies her dietary needs and those of us meat eaters as well. By adding shiitake to this frittata I was able to introduce an umami earthiness, and a chewy texture reminiscent of meat that kept both camps happy. Huzzah!
Use the ratios in this recipe as a guide and you can turn just about anything into a frittata. By keeping the egg to cheese ratio in check you have a great foundation from which to launch your own culinary genius. Whether you cook from scratch, incorporating your favorite veggies and meats, or use your frittata as a means to use up all sorts meat, seafood and veggie scraps from your fridge, in the end you'll be eating like a queen (or a king as it were).
Cheers – Steve
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons EVOO
- 3 large leeks, white and light green parts only
- 8 ounces shiitake mushrooms, stemmed and sliced
- 8 large cage-free eggs
- 1 tablespoon finely minced tarragon
- 1 teaspoon finely minced fresh thyme
- 6 ounces gruyere cheese, grated
- kosher salt and freshly ground white pepper to taste
- Heat oven to 350℉ and set a rack in the center.
- Prepare the leeks by cutting off the root end and the tough, dark green leaves. Slice the leek down the center lengthwise, then across into 1/4 inch thick half-moon shapes. Place the pieces in a large bowl of cold water and agitate with your hand to clean thoroughly. Spin dry in a salad spinner and reserve.
- Heat 2 tablespoon butter and 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet set over medium-high heat. Add the leeks, season with salt and cook, stirring frequently until they are lightly browned , about 7-8 minutes. Transfer the leeks to a bowl and return the pan to the heat.
- Add the shiitakes, season lightly with salt, and cook until they have released their moisture and have browned nicely. Remove to the bowl with the leeks.
- In a large bowl, whisk the eggs with a scant teaspoon of salt and 6-7 grindings of a pepper grinder. Add the grated cheese, leeks and mushrooms, and the minced herbs to the bowl and mix well.
- Wipe out the skillet, then add the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter and 1 tablespoon of EVOO and set the pan over medium heat. Swirl the pan to mix the butter and oil, then pour in the contents of the bowl, spreading the mix to evenly distribute the cheese and veggies. Cook over the flame until the eggs begin to set at he edges, sliding a rubber spatula around the outside of the frittata to make sure it isn't sticking to the pan.
- Pop the pan into the oven and cook until the eggs are fully set, another 5-6 minutes. Pull from the oven and let cool for 2-3 minutes before sliding the frittata onto a platter or cutting board to slice and serve.
- Plate with a crisp green salad and chunk of warm, crusty bread. Any leftovers are delicious cold, or easily heated in the microwave for a delicious quick breakfast or the next day's lunch.