Frittata is an Italian omelette which, for my taste, is the endlessly flexible quick-fix what-needs-using-up-in-the fridge meal. The only thing you really need to have is plenty of eggs. The following recipe is one that you can vary. I like it because it is reminiscent of summer tastes - which is not to say you can’t do it at any other time of year.In our garden, courgettes are of course always plentiful in summer.
I got to know about frittata when going through one of my cooking bibles (more of which at a later stage), The Silver Spoon, Italy’s best-selling cookery book of the last 50 years.
What you needAll the amounts can be handled very flexibly. The ingredients can be varies almost endlessly.
- 5 eggs (or more), which should be really fresh. If you are worried about hygiene, wash the outside of the eggs before you break them.
- salt and pepper
- 15 to 20 olives, de-stoned and cut in half
- 10 slices of sun-dried tomatoes
- 1 medium-sized courgette, cut into 4 mm thick slices
- chopped and pre-sautéed spring onions
- 2 cloves of garlic mashed (or more ...)
- 2 tablespoons of bread crumbs (optional)
- Fresh herbs (for example parsley, sage, rosemary, thyme, oregano, marjoram, lovage)
- olive oil for frying
- 3 tablespoons of parmesan or percorino romano, grated
What you do
|Still a bit too runny on the top|
- Break the egs into a bowl and whisk till yolk and eggwhite are blended.
- Add salt and pepper and the other ingredients (except the oil and the grated cheese) one by one and keep stirring to create an even mix.
- Heat olive oil in a wide frying pan (I use an iron pan that isn’t coated but has through long use developed a great patina, which acts as well as a coating)
- Pour in the mixture and make sure the solid bits are evenly spaced.
- Cook slowly until the egg on the top is just about to solidify.
- Liberally sprinkle with grated cheese.
- Tilt the pan a little to let the frittata slip and quickly fold it over. You will find that that the underside is quite crispy whereas the top, now the inside, is still rather soft.
- Turn to ensure that any bits that are too soft can get firmer and that the outside is equally browned on both sides.
- Serve as quickly as possible because the centre should still be barely cooked.
One of my daughters has a deep-seated aversion to what she calls “slobbery” bits of egg. For those with a similar dislike, you can always keep the frittata warm in the oven for a few minutes.
|The colours on my amateur camera suggest that this one is burnt. It's not...|
Some may have noticed that the sequence of herbs above is reminiscent of a song, Scarborough fair. As a matter of fact, parsley, sage, rosmary and thyme were meant to keep the devil away because what looks like two lovers making life difficult for each other is actually based on an old traditional song motive in which a human (the girl in the Scarborough fair) has to match everything the devil (the boy) throws at her linguistically. Singing about the devil was believed to have the potential of summoning him, hence the incantation of the apotropaic herbs.
This useless piece of information can be woven into an otherwise uneventful after-dinner conversation.