My family loves eggs. So I often search for and experiment with different kinds of egg preparations. This is the frittata which I made this Sunday and it was truly delicious! This is the first time I have made frittata myself, although I had tasted a different version of frittata in my sister-in-law’s home.
Frittata is an Italian word, which means “to fry”; originally it applies to any kind of egg preparation cooked in a pan or skillet. The frittata can be regarded as an Italian makeover to the Spanish tortilla (where a very thick egg omlette is cooked, incorporating fried potatoes). It generally has a number of additional ingredients, such as ham or sausage, cheese, vegetables or even pasta! Eggs are beaten heartily till these become frothy for that “extra fluffy” texture. But, unlike a general omlette, where the eggs are beaten first, then cooked until atleast half-set and then additional ingredients are put on this and rolled or flipped over, frittata is cooked with eggs and all other ingredients together. A 10” non-stick skillet works best for a frittata meant for four people. The end-result is a very thick and fluffy omlette, incorporated with a variety of tempting ingredients, along with herbs!
While serving, frittata can be cut into wedges and served as a part of breakfast, lunch or dinner, along with other accompaniments, such as a variety of breads salads and beans. In Italy, cold frittata wedges are a common food in corporate lunchboxes!
Vegetables such as spinach, mushrooms, peppers, tomato and asparagus make the frittata more colourful and nutritious! Frittatas are first cooked for some time on the stove top until the bottom layer of the egg mixture has set, and then are baked in the oven to solidify this completely and brown the frittata.
This frittata has been cooked till the end on a stove-top and no baking is involved!
Stove-Top Asparagus Frittata
- US large eggs: 8
- Onion (chopped finely): ½ cup
- Potato (cubed into very small pieces): ½ cup
- Crème Fraiche (sour cream): 2 tbsp
- Milk: ½ cup
- Sugar: ¼ tsp
- White pepper powder: ½ tsp
- Peas: ½ cup
- Fresh baby asparagus spears: 18
- White button mushrooms (cut into small pieces): 1.5 cups
- Chives: ¼ cup
- Colby–Monterey Jack cheese (cut into small cubes): 1 cup
- Pork sausage (cut into thin rings): 1 cup
- Tomato (chopped finely): 1 cup
- Dried rosemary: ½ tsp
- Fresh cilantro (chopped finely): 2 tbsp
- Salt (divided): 1 tsp
- Butter (divided): 2 tbsp
Heat 1 tbsp butter in a pan and sauté the onion till browned. Then add the potatoes, alongwith ½ tsp salt. After 3 min, add the tomatoes, peas, mushrooms, sausage rings, as well as six asparagus spears (chopped into a few pieces) into this and continue to sauté on a medium flame for five more minutes or until the potatoes are almost cooked. Switch off the gas, add the dried rosemary and mix well.
Blend the crème fraiche and the milk very well in a blender and keep aside. In a bowl, tip in all the eggs, along with ½ tsp salt and beat the eggs vigourously for atleast 15 min, till the mixture becomes creamy and extremely frothy. Slowly add the cooked vegetables, the milk-crème mixture and half the chopped cheese to this beaten egg mixture and mix everything well.
Heat a 10” non-stick skillet and add 1 tbsp butter, making sure that you coat the melted butter all over the skillet. Now add the egg mixture to this. Top it up with rest of the cheese and chopped cilantro. Cover and cook on a slow heat for 25 minutes. Add the rest of the asparagus spears at the top of the frittata for decoration and cook for one more minute, covered.
[Note: My frittata came out perfectly cooked throughout, so I did not flip it or bake it further. You can, however, bake this for additional 5–10 min, if you wish to brown the top of the frittata. Butter can be replaced with olive oil.]
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