Thursday, March 28, 2013

Spring Frittata

My absolute favorite meal to entertain or cook is brunch!  It's so versatile and who doesn't love eating both lunch and breakfast together with a little adult beverage to wash it all down, cause at brunch you can do that!  Frittatas are easy, healthy, completely affordable, and I make them at least once a week.  They are sort of like the Italian version of an omelet or quiche.  They are crustless, so it's much healthier than a quiche and they bake in the oven, which makes them easier than an omelet!  What is not to love about eggs, cheese and tons of seasonal veggies!  I like to serve frittatas for breakfast with a side of yogurt, fruit or some buttered toast.  But you can also very easily serve them with a cup of soup or salad for lunch or dinner.  Like pizza I always just use what I have on hand to make them but I do have some favorite combos:

My French Inspired Frittata
ham, gruyere, potato & roasted leek

My Italian Inspired Frittata
tomato, spinach, basil, parm, mozzarella & salami

My Mexican Inspired Frittata
spicy sausage, corn, jack cheese, oregano & salsa

American Bistro Inspired Frittata
roasted chicken, potato, onion, artichoke, cheddar & thyme

The sky is the limit when creating combinations that go well with eggs, for me anything goes well with an egg; it's my favorite canvas!  I have even been known to get crazy and chop up leftover pizza, add in some veggies, mix it into my eggs and...Voilá! You now have eggs that will get kids to eat their veggies, my two year old loves this!  I always cook most of my ingredients before I add them to the eggs, they do not cook long enough in the oven so its a good place to use your leftover cooked veggies and meats.  Things like tomatoes, spinach and herbs I like to add raw, they are tender enough that they only need the 20 minutes of cooking time to be delicious and warmed through.  

The inspiration for my spring frittata recipe comes from two things. First, the abundance of tender green vegetables that start popping up at your farmer's market or grocery store in March and April.  After months of squash, potatoes and cabbage I am so ready for the tiny tender stalks of the first asparagus of the season. These first stalks are the best of the season and they don't last long, if you are buying them locally grown, so get your hands on them while you can. Revel in the fact that they are the best, and they are yours to do what you will! Personally, I root for, using them in my recipe! 

Spring asparagus, roasted
Roasted scallions

My second inspiration is, the emergence of soft, tangy, locally made goat cheeses. Some of the goat farms in my area give their goats a rest during the winter. So when I start seeing all the wonderful varieties again I immediately start devising ways to use it, stat!  It's so creamy and satisfying I would eat it for every meal, if that was acceptable behavior, which I feel it is not ha! The particular cheese that I used for this recipe you can actually get year round, it's a wonderful company located in Vermont and all of the milk for the cheese comes from local farms, supporting the small farming communities in this area! Click on the link below for the Vermont Creamery and see all of their wonderful products and read about their amazing story, I just adore them and their products. 

Vermont Creamery, herbed chèvre.

In my house one frittata easily serves 4, but if served with a hearty side dish it can be stretched to serve 6.


3 Whole, organic eggs, I always use locally raised, free-range eggs.

3 Organic egg whites

1/4 Cup 2%, pasture raised, organic milk, I always buy local.

2 Pieces nitrate-free, pasture raised Canadian bacon, browned and chopped.

1 Cup roasted asparagus, chopped, you can use raw asparagus if it's tender.

1/3 Cup roasted scallions, mostly white parts, chopped* (see note below)

1 Tbsp raw scallions, chopped

2 Organic tomatoes, chopped

2 oz Goat cheese, mine was local herbed chevre, but any kind will be delicious.  If you do not like goat cheese, I suggest using a feta or very sharp cheddar.


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

In a large bowl combine the whole eggs, whites, milk, bacon, asparagus, both scallions, tomatoes and mix well.  I really like a heavy veggie ratio, feel free to use smaller amounts or add more eggs if it looks too "veggie" for your family's tastes.

Heavy on the veggies!

Line a round, shallow baking dish (such as a pie dish or oven proof skillet) with parchment paper and pour the mixture into this.  Spread out the mixture evenly.  Crumble up the goat cheese and spread evenly over the frittata.  

Place in the middle of the oven and bake for 20-25 mins or until your eggs are set and the edges are slightly golden brown.  Be patient and do not turn your oven up, eggs must be cooked slowly or they become tough.

Serve with a fruit salad, cup of soup or on a piece of toast and enjoy a taste of spring!

*note: I roast my asparagus and scallions in a 400 degree oven with olive oil, salt and pepper for 15 mins.  

"(on asparagus) Europeans of the Renaissance swore by it as an aphrodisiac, and the church banned it from nunneries.” 
― Barbara KingsolverAnimal, Vegetable, Miracle

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