Foolproof Frittatas

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While people often order frittatas at restaurants, they are hesitant to tackle them at home.

However, frittatas are remarkably easy to make and welcoming to leftover vegetables and any cheese that melts. Their ingredient possibilities are endless. All you need to succeed are creativity and a few pointers.

In making frittatas, you must use a cast-iron skillet or one that can withstand the heat of the broiler.

It is best to roast or sauté vegetables and onions before making frittatas, because raw produce gives off moisture, turning eggs watery.

You can prepare the vegetables a day in advance, causing people to wonder how you whipped up such a marvel in no time at all. Bring the vegetables to room temperature, though, before assembling the frittata ingredients.

You can fool around with ingredient proportions, but you must have enough eggs to cover the ingredients in your frittata. Four is the minimum number for an 8-inch skillet. You’ll need at least six eggs for a 10-inch skillet.

Make sure the eggs are firm and cooked through before serving. If your frittata is runny in the center, then pop it under the broiler again. However, certain cheeses, such as mozzarella and cheddar, are gooey when they melt.

Frittata ingredients are flexible and versatile. Despite what people say, you can make frittatas without cheese. Once you’ve tried a few of them, you’ll get the hang of what to do.

Frittatas can be served as a hearty breakfast, a surprising lunch or, with a salad and bread, as a light dinner. They can be an appetizer. At room temperature, they are a welcome addition to a picnic. They can be reheated at 350 degrees and served as leftovers. There’s absolutely nothing a frittata can’t do.

Optional accompaniments for any frittatas include toast, bagels, a warm baguette, dinner rolls, croissants and/or a salad.

Broccoli and Potato Frittata | Pareve

Serves four to six as an entree; serves eight as an appetizer

Requires a 10-inch cast-iron skillet

1 potato

cups of broccoli

3 tablespoons olive oil, or more if needed

1 large shallot, diced fine

6  eggs

Kosher salt to taste

Freshly ground black pepper to taste

Pierce the potato several times with a fork. Microwave the potato for five minutes or until softened. When cool enough to touch, cut the potato into bite-sized cubes, keeping the skin on. Reserve.

Break off the broccoli florets. Cut each floret into three or four pieces, depending on the size. Reserve.

Over a medium flame, heat two tablespoons of oil in the skillet. Using the handle, tilt the skillet so the oil covers the bottom evenly. Sauté the shallot in oil until fragrant, about one to two minutes. Add the broccoli and sauté for three minutes. Add the potato, salt and pepper. Stir until combined.

Cover the skillet and remove it from the flame for several minutes. The recipe can be made to this point and refrigerated a day in advance. Bring it to room temperature before continuing.

Preheat the broiler. If the broiler feature is inside of your oven, place a rack in the center of the oven, close the oven door and turn on the broiler feature.

Crack the eggs into a medium-sized mixing bowl. Add a little salt and pepper. Whisk the eggs until well combined and fluffy.

Add another tablespoon of oil to the skillet and place it over a medium flame. Whisk the eggs momentarily and pour them into the skillet. Shake the skillet so the eggs move between the broccoli mixture and spread out evenly. Leave the skillet on the flame until the eggs are set at the bottom but loose at the surface.

Using an oven mitt, move the skillet to the broiler. Broil for five to eight minutes, or until the eggs are completely set and golden brown. The edges may begin to curl. Remove the frittata from the oven and cut it into pie-shaped pieces. Serve it immediately with or without accompaniments.

Spanish Style Frittata | Dairy

Serves two to four as an entree, serves six as an appetizer

Requires an 8-inch cast-iron skillet

1 tablespoon plus 1 tablespoon sweet (unsalted) butter

4 mushrooms sliced thin and cut in half

cup green pepper, diced

6 cherry tomatoes, cut in half

Kosher salt to taste

1 bunch scallions, sliced thin

¼ cup manchego cheese, sliced thin and cut in half

4 eggs, whisked

Preheat the broiler. If the broiler feature is inside of your oven, place a rack in the center of the oven, close the oven door and turn on the broiler feature.

Melt one tablespoon of butter in an 8-inch cast iron skillet. Add the mushrooms, green pepper and tomatoes. Sprinkle with salt. Stir. Sauté until the vegetables are wilted, about three minutes. Sprinkle on the scallions and manchego.

Whisk the eggs and pour them into the skillet. Move the skillet around so that the eggs spread evenly between the ingredients. Keep on the flame until the eggs are set on the bottom and sides of the skillet, but still loose and liquid on top.

Place the skillet under the broiler and broil until the eggs at the surface and around the rim are golden brown. Remove the frittata from the oven and cut it into four equal pieces. Serve it immediately with or without accompaniments.

Asparagus and Mozzarella Frittata | Dairy

Serves two to four as an entree; serves six as an appetizer

Requires an 8-inch cast-iron skillet

6-8 asparagus spears, steamed and cooled to room temperature

4 large eggs

Kosher salt to taste

2 tablespoons olive oil, or more if needed

1 small onion, diced fine

3 ounces of mozzarella, cut into small pieces, sliced thin

Cut the asparagus into half-inch pieces. In a bowl, whisk the eggs together with the salt. Reserve the asparagus and eggs.

Preheat the broiler. If the broiler feature is inside of your oven, place a rack in the center of the oven, close the oven door and turn on the broiler feature.

On a medium flame, heat the oil in the skillet until warm. Using the handle, tilt the skillet so the oil covers the bottom evenly. Add the onion and sauté until fragrant and sweating, about two minutes. Spoon in the asparagus and stir until warmed through. Add more oil, if needed. Place the mozzarella evenly around the skillet.

Whisk the eggs again until fluffy. Pour them into the skillet. Shake the skillet so the eggs move evenly between the ingredients. Leave the skillet on the flame until the eggs are set at the bottom but loose at the surface.

Using an oven mitt, move the skillet to the broiler. Broil for five to eight minutes, or until the eggs are completely set and golden brown. The edges may begin to curl. Remove from the oven and cut into pie-shaped pieces. Serve immediately with or without accompaniments.

Almost Egg-White Frittata | Dairy

Serves two to four as an entree; serves six as an appetizer

Requires an 8-inch cast-iron skillet

1 egg plus 5 egg whites

2 tablespoons olive oil, or more, if needed

1 small onion, diced fine

2 mushrooms, cleaned and sliced

Kosher salt to taste

2 ounces of cheddar cheese, diced small

Preheat the broiler. If the broiler feature is inside of your oven, place a rack in the center of the oven, close the oven door and turn on the broiler feature.

Whisk the egg and the five egg whites until fluffy. Reserve.

Over a medium flame, heat the oil in the skillet until warm. Using the handle, tilt the skillet so the oil covers the bottom evenly. Add the onion and mushroom slices. Sprinkle on some salt. Sauté until fragrant and sweating, about two minutes. Stir in the cheese.

Whisk the eggs and whites again. Pour them into the skillet. Shake the skillet so the eggs move evenly between the ingredients. Leave the skillet on the flame until the eggs are set at the bottom but loose at the surface.

Using an oven mitt, move the skillet to the broiler. Broil for five to eight minutes, or until the eggs are completely set and golden brown. The edges may begin to curl. Remove the frittata from the oven and cut it into pie-shaped pieces. Serve it immediately with or without accompaniments.

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