Asparagus is one of my favourite ingredients to add to a frittata – a sort of Italian baked egg pie, much like a quiche but without a crust. It has the same characteristics as an omelet, but is much less finicky since you cook everything together at once in the pan. The eggs bind together any combination of ingredients you like – meat, cheese, vegetables, potatoes, herbs, cooked pasta – anything that goes well in an omelet makes a great frittata, and it’s a great way to use up leftovers. If you want to wing it, the basic proportions are 1 to 1 1/2 cups filling for every 5-6 eggs. Egg substitutes work well for frittata too.
Once you get the hang of it, a frittata is a great fridge cleaner – and makes use of any vegetables that happen to be in season. Serve bite-size squares of cold frittata as party appetizers, or leftover wedges between buttered toast for a breakfast sandwich.
Asparagus, Tomato and Spinach Frittata
olive oil, for cooking
1 small bunch asparagus, ends trimmed, chopped into 1” pieces (about 2 cups)
1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes, halved (about 2 cups)
1 garlic clove, crushed (optional)
1-2 packed cups baby spinach leaves, torn or chopped
5 large eggs (or 3 eggs, 3 whites)
1/2 cup grated old cheddar, Monterey Jack, Gouda, Parmesan, crumbled feta or goat cheese
salt and pepper to taste
Preheat the oven to 375°F.
Heat a drizzle of oil in a 10-inch ovenproof skillet set over medium heat. Sauté the asparagus for 2-3 minutes, then add the tomatoes and garlic to the pan and cook for another 2 minutes, until the tomatoes release their juices. Add the spinach and cook until it wilts.
Meanwhile, stir together the eggs, cheese, salt and pepper in a medium bowl. Spread the vegetables into an even layer in the pan and pour the beaten eggs overtop; reduce heat to medium-low and cook the frittata for 5-8 minutes, until the bottom is set. To help it along, gently pull back the sides with a heatproof spatula to allow any uncooked egg to run underneath.
Transfer the skillet to the oven and bake for about 10 minutes, until the top is set and golden. Serve hot, at room temperature, or cold. Serves 4.
Have picky eaters? Try these 10 breakfast recipes to tempt even the fussiest of appetites.