Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Fritatta de Jour

The Flexible Fritatta recipe is one of my favorite impress-the-guests easy brunches.

It begins with the big cast iron skillet. If you do not have a big cast iron skillet... I was going to say a large frying pan might work, but really, you need a cast iron skillet. They're wonderful. Lightweight pans are simply not as impressive as a big black heavy cast iron pan, and you can't shift from stove-top to oven with one of those wimpy plastic-handled "non-stick" things. You need cast iron.

So you begin with your cast iron skillet on the stove top browning potatoes in olive oil. Usually, "potatoes" translates to six Yukon Gold potatoes peeled and diced -- but I sometimes switch it up and use sweet potato instead. The original recipe called for only 2 cups of diced potato -- that is so not enough potato.

Okay, so while the potatoes of choice brown away on the stove top, you'll be mixing the rest of the ingredients in a big stainless steel mixing bowl. I'm willing to allow your grandmother's large crockery mixing bowl here -- but you need a big size bowl.

The rest of the ingredients:
  • 8-12 eggs depending on how big the eggs are and how many guests you have.
  • 24 oz. soft cheese, meaning cottage cheese usually. The original recipe called for ricotta but I'm not a fan of ricotta. Once, when I started making a fritatta before I realized I was out of cottage cheese, I successfully substituted two packages of cream cheese which had ended up in the freezer and gotten denatured. (Cream cheese does not freeze well but I hated to waste it so it was still sitting in the fridge.)
  • 1-2 lb. Leftover cheeses -- that half a tray of cheese on toothpicks leftover from last night's party and sitting in your fridge? Remove the toothpicks and toss it in -- the new cheeses your sister, or the deli guy, recommended you try and you can't stand the flavor? Grate them up and toss 'em in. Try to have a plain cheese, a motz, swiss, or longhorn in the mix too.
  • 1 stick butter, melted (actually, margarine will work too, but why start worrying about fat content now?)
  • 1/2 cup -- or a whole cup's good too -- chopped fresh HERB... okay, usually basil, sometimes rosemary, and, in a pinch, the parsley garnish from that cheese tray.
  • 6 heaping tablespoons flour (in case you can't guess, that's going to be all purpose, unbleached white flour)
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
Stir that all up together and pour it over the browned potatoes. In the cast iron skillet, that's right, and move the skillet to the oven. Use a hot pad or you'll burn yourself and have to run cold water over the burn, which will delay brunch.

Bake for 1 hour at 350 degrees (Fahrenheit).

Serve family-style in the skillet. Just pop that golden goodness out of the oven and onto a trivet (or hot pad) on the table and let the drooling begin.

1 comment:

  1. Yummm! Here's to a happy New Year!
    kari and kijsa


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