Frittatas make quick easy dinners, especially when you can’t think of anything else. The best thing is that frittatas are so flexible in terms of ingredients that you can almost always put one together. With that in mind, take the following more as a starting point for your own frittata. Don’t like squash? Use sweet potatoes, instead. Out of mushrooms? Toss in a bit of broccoli. No cream? Use milk, or even omit. Like it hot and spicy? Add a jalapeño. Basically, put in what you have and what you like.
Finally, a note about the difference between a frittata, an omelet, and a quiche. We’re not sure, so we’ll just make something up. Frittatas cook partly on the stove, and partly in the oven, omelets only use the stove, and a quiche uses only the oven. How’s that?
The ingredients list is what we had on hand. You probably have a few different things in your crisper or cupboard. Use them; don’t go out and buy the things on our list. For example, if we had potatoes, we would have diced one up, but we didn’t have any. Eggs, however, are free-range. Remember: happy hens lay good eggs. Cheese, use any kind that you like to eat and have available. In general, stronger flavored cheeses are better. Think sharp Cheddars, or Parmesan.
Procedure in detail:
Chop the ingredients. Cut them into medium-sized pieces so that they’ll sauté quickly, but not so small that you won’t notice them in the finished dish. For something like this we like to get everything ready before starting. Chefs call this “mise en place,” literally “putting in place.” It really helps for quick recipes. And it makes it sound as though you are a chef.
Crack the eggs. Crack ’em into a 2 cup measuring cup if you have one. Or something with a pour spout. Or a bowl. Or something that will hold the eggs. Add the cream. Whisk until the eggs and cream are fully mixed and a bright yellow.
Preheat oven to 350°F. You will be baking this a bit, too. Possibly even broiling.
In an oven-safe skillet, sauté the onions. For oven-safe, we use a well seasoned cast iron skillet. It’s non-stick and can take any amount of heat we throw at it. If you have one, this is the perfect time to use it. We like to start the onions early, mainly because we don’t like to bite into a raw crunchy onion bit. If you don’t mind, or even like, raw onion bits, feel free to move on to the next step.
Add any ingredient that takes longer to sauté. We tossed in the carrots, because we knew they’d take about 5 minutes more than the squash and mushrooms. You’ll want everything mostly cooked through when finished, but you don’t want anything mushy.
Sauté over medium heat until everything is cooked through. Ideally, everything is just tender. They’ll cook a bit more while everything is finishing, but not much. You really don’t want to have a raw potato lurking in there, it’ll throw off your karma. Not to mention your dinner (or lunch).
Add the egg mixture. Just pour it right on top. Don’t stir, that’s why we whisked the eggs and cream together earlier. Just let the egg milk mixture flow around the remaining ingredients. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, if desired.
Top with cheese. We happened to have Havarti with dill. Not the ideal choice, but it’s what we had, so in it went. We’d really suggest a sharp cheddar, or maybe a Gruyère, or, if you can find it, a double Gloucester — yum.
Bake for 10-15 minutes. Bake until the eggs have completely set and the cheese has started to bubble. If need be, and your skillet can handle it, broil it for the last 2-3 minutes. If you crank up the broiler, watch closely, you can go from bubbly cheese to a burnt mess in the pan in a minute.
Serve and enjoy.
We give frittatas 5 stars in the “Worth it?” They’re just too easy not to.