Asparagus Frittata

A few of these are thick enough to harvest and I'll leave the rest to develop into their ferny foliage.

A few of these are thick enough to harvest and I’ll leave the rest to develop into their ferny foliage.

Asparagus season is in full swing now and we returned from a quick trip to Maine to find enough for a frittata and for a vegetable accompaniment to our evening meal.  I pick any spear thicker than a pencil and snap it off the stalk in the garden at its natural breaking point so I don’t have to trim it in the house (unless I want to make asparagus soup, in which case I would cut it at the ground).

Frittata is a good item for the lunch repertoire, easy, quick yet elegant enough for guests.   I made mine using asparagus, onions, mushrooms and parmesan as a base (goat cheese is good with this too) but almost any combination of vegetables will work:  spinach, onions and goat cheese; red peppers, onions, summer squash and cheddar; tomatoes, basil and parmesan (or mozzarella for a “Margherita” frittata), or check leftovers in the refrigerator for a pleasing combination.  Add bacon, sausage, ham or other meats for a more filling meal.  This is a dish that welcomes experimentation.  It is made first on the stove top and finished under the broiler so choose a pan that can handle this treatment.

Basic Frittata Instructions

  • Eggs, 2 per person and one for the pan (or 5 for two people)
  • Salt
  • Splash of water
  • Vegetable combination

Film the pan with oil then saute the vegetables, caramelizing onions first, if using them.  Meanwhile whisk the eggs in a bowl until well combined, salt to taste (less if using bacon) then turn on the cold water and quickly run the bowl under the faucet, less than a second.  I say “one” and pull it out.  (It’s about 2 tbsp. of water)  whisk again and add half the cheese.  When the vegetables are ready, arrange them in the pan so they are evenly spaced and turn down the burner.  Gently pour the egg mixture over the vegetables taking care to cover the whole pan.  Spread the remaining cheese over the top, pressing it in if it sticks up too much. Cook on low for three or four minutes until you see it firming up slightly around the edge, then put it under the broiler until it puffs and browns slightly.  The amount of time is variable, depending on how well done you like your eggs.  Watch it carefully while under the broiler.  Serve immediately, in wedges.  I always serve it with my home-made ketchup as I like ketchup with eggs.

Lightly browned and ready to serve.

Lightly browned and ready to serve.

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