July 8, 2011

Frittata with Zucchini, Cherry Tomatoes, Caramelized Onions and Goat Cheese

"You had me at frittata..."

What's ironic about my decision to make a frittata on one of the first days back from my weekend in Rhode Island is that my mom was trying to send me back to DC with a dozen eggs from her backyard chickens (she has 18, I think). I declined, even though her chickens make gorgeous eggs with bright marigold-colored yolks, because I don't eat a lot of eggs. I pretty much only use eggs in baking. And then I decided to make a frittata - with grocery store eggs. It is a travesty, really.

Regardless, this frittata was delicious! The recipe is from the Sur La Table cookbook, Eating Local (diligent readers will remember that the beet dip from my vegetarian dinner party came from this cookbook as well). I added in caramelized onions because I happen to have a couple onions on hand and I used more basil and cheese than the recipe called for, because has more basil and cheese ever hurt a recipe? I don't think so. The one thing that annoyed me was the halved tomatoes - very pretty to look at on top of the frittata, but their insides gushed out when you cut into them. Smaller pieces would be just a little more fork friendly.

Frittata with Zucchini, Cherry Tomatoes, Caramelized Onions and Goat Cheese
Adapted from Eating Local

Serves 3 as a main dish


3 or more tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 sweet onion, diced
1 zucchini, ends trimmed and cut into 1/3 inch thick slices
6 large eggs, beaten
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
 freshly ground black pepper
10 cherry tomatoes, halved
handful fresh basil leaves, torn into pieces
2-3 oz goat cheese

1. Preheat a broiler and position a rack 8 to 10 inches from the element.

2. Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large saute pan over medium-low heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally until beginning to caramelize, about 20 minutes. If the onions are cooking too quickly, lower the heat. If the pan gets dry, add a little more olive oil. Continue cooking the onions to your desired level of caramelization. Set aside.

3. Meanwhile, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a 10-inch non-stick broiler-proof skillet over moderately high heat. When the oil begins to ripple, add the zucchini. The slices should fit in a single layer (I had to cook my zucchini in 3 batches because I cut them thinner than the recipe suggests). Cook, turning once, until browned on both sides. Using tongs, transfer the slices to paper towel to drain and cool. Discard the oil remaining in the skillet and wipe the skillet dry with a paper towel.

4. Return the skillet to moderately low heat and add the remaining 1 tablespoon oil. Whisk the eggs with the salt and pepper in a bowl, whisk in the onion, then stir in the sauteed zucchini. Add to the hot skillet and use a heatproof rubber spatula to separate the zucchini slices so that they are evenly spaced. Cook slowly until the frittata is mostly set but still a little runny on top, 8 to 10 minutes. Scatter the cherry tomatoes and basil over the surface, poking them down into the moist egg. Dot with the goat cheese (I used more cheese than the recipe calls for).

5. Put the skillet under the broiler element until the top is puffed (mine did not puff), firm to the touch, and golden brown, 2-3 minutes (mine took 3-4 minutes). Slide the frittata out onto a cutting board or serving platter. Let rest for at least 15 minutes before cutting into wedges (I may have waited 5 minutes). The frittata is best when warm, not hot.

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