Whether you serve it for brunch or dinner, this simple frittata featuring ricotta cheese and spring vegetables is always a favorite!
Half way between an omelette and a quiche without dough, a frittata is the ultimate answer to lazy days or when you want to use your leftovers. It’s extremely easy and versatile, as you can use any ingredients you have at hands to garnish your frittata: it can be any veggies of your choice depending on the season, some cheese (feta, ricotta, mozzarella, grated cheese…), and even some serrano or chorizo. Basically you can use all the ingredients you would put in a quiche or in an omelette.
The frittata version I am suggesting today has absolutely nothing fancy and you would probably do it by yourself without the help of any recipe. But with the Spring season here, I figured it was simply a good opportunity to put some greens in your frittata, tossing together some new vegetables in season such as fresh spinach, asparagus and scallions. I also used potatoes I had at hand, bringing more texture to the dish, and spooned some ricotta cheese that make your frittata literally melt in your mouth.
The seasoning is very important and here I love the addition of fresh scallions together with some dry herbs (I used herbes de Provence) and freshly ground pepper. Again, except for the eggs of course, feel free to skip any of the ingredients listed in the recipe, or replace them with any other ingredients you fancy. It will always turn out great anyway!
As easy at seems, there are a few rules to keep in mind to master the perfect and fluffiest frittata possible. First of all, make sure you use an oven-proof skillet. Personally, I love using a cast-iron skillet but any other kind would work too. Also, remember to always preheat the oven before placing the pan inside. The intense blast of heat will make the eggs puff like a soufflé, resulting in a fluffy frittata.
Now about the recipe itself, there is a simple trick regarding the eggs: make sure you beat and salt them just before using them. If you combine them in advance and let them sit, the eggs will become watery. Also, do not stir the eggs in the skillet while cooking them on the stove. Instead I suggest you draw a heatproof spatula across the bottom of the pan in deliberate strokes to create large curds.
You know the frittata is ready to go in the oven when you the bottom of the skillet is set while you can still see some runny parts on top. The baking time in the oven will help the top part to firm without making the bottom part burned (as it would probably happen if you cooked it all on the broiler, as the frittata is quite thick compare to an omelette).
Once baked, you can enjoy your frittata warm or at room temperature. I always have a preference for the warm version when served for breakfast or as a main dish, and for the lukewarm one when cut into small pieces to serve as an appetizer for a party with friends. In this case, have fun and make them fancy: put them on a toothpick with a mini mozzarella ball, a cherry tomato and a fresh basil leave on top!
- ½ Tablespoon unsalted butter
- 2 medium potatoes, sliced
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- 2-3 small scallions, thinly sliced
- 1 bunch of asparagus, tops only
- 1 pound (450g) baby spinach leaves, chopped
- Salt and pepper
- 8 large eggs
- ½ cup (125g) ricotta cheese
- 1 pinch herbes de provence
- Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C).
- In a small skillet, melt the butter and cook the sliced potatoes on both sides until tender and slightly golden. Set aside.
- Pour one Tablespoon of oil into a large cast-iron skillet (or other oven-proof skillet) over medium-high heat. Add the scallions and asparagus, and cook for a couple of minutes, stirring frequently. Add the spinach and cook, stirring to incorporate, just until it wilts. Add the sliced potatoes. Add salt and stir well.
- In a medium-sized bowl, lightly beat the eggs until frothy; and add salt. Pour over the veggies, and drop Tablespoons of ricotta on the surface. Cook for about 3 minutes, until it is set on the bottom.
- Transfer the skillet to the oven and cook for another 10-15 minutes, or until the eggs are set. Season with pepper and herbs, and serve warm or at room temperature.