Tuesday Dinner: Spinach & Tomato Frittata

Who can turn away from a good frittata? Apparently most of America. Trapped in my elitist New York bubble, I apparently missed the shame in eating breakfast for dinner. While sitting on my ivory tower sneering at the peasantry, it turns out that people are embarrassed to admit that pancakes were their evening meal. From NPR:

There always seems be some shame in having breakfast for dinner. Every time someone scrambles up an egg, or plops some pancake batter on the griddle, there’s an accompanying feeling of not being a Proper Adult. PAs clearly know the difference between breakfast and dinner, and feed their family the appropriate meal for the hour

The Wife is a major proponent of first meal as third meal, a common practice around here. The Kid approves as well. My 4-year-old basically lives on gluten free French toast and yogurt. How do you cast shame on something as comforting as pillowy eggs, a stack of pancakes or, gasp, bacon for din? It can’t be blamed on the South. I mean, Waffle House is as much of an institution down there as college football and bigotry Chick-Fil-A. Who could be perpetuating such a wanton crime against humanity? It has to be a west coast thing. 


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So, yeah, tangents aside, frittatas make for spectacular one-pan dinners. This entry from Kendra Vaculin was a community pick at Food52, an excellent community-driven food site. It is dependant on fresh vegetables, and while spinach is likely green and bountiful at your supermarkets, tomatoes tend to be hit or miss. This weekend, the selection at my Wegmans was more miss. I used some frozen roasted tomatoes that I made late last summer. Ideally, you need a cup of these to make the dish work.

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WHAT WORKED: Everything basically worked well here, but…

WHAT DIDN’T: If I did this again, I would try to press as much water as I could from the ricotta. The final product was a little runny.

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EASE OF PREPARATION: Medium. It’s very easy to burn this dish or make a total mess of things with the liquid created by the tomatoes and ricotta.

BEST FOR: A Sunday evening dinner, a mid-week meal (if you have time), or brunch.

SERVE WITH: A sweet wine, or a fruit or veggie juice.

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Spinach & Tomato Frittata
Adapted lightly from Kendra Vaculin’s original at Food52

  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 handfuls fresh spinach, chopped (NOTE: Avoid frozen if you can because it will be too wet)
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 8 large basil leaves, chopped
  • 5 eggs
  • 1 cup chopped tomatoes (NOTE: Fresh is probably best, but roasted will work too)
  • 2 oz. asiago cheese, shredded
  • 3 oz. whole milk ricotta, drained
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees.

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Heat olive oil in a 10-inch skillet over medium heat. Add the chopped spinach and cook until wilted, about 2 to 3 minutes, stirring to prevent burning. Transfer the spinach to a plate and set aside.

2015-01-06 at 17-59-54In a large mixing bowl, whisk the eggs. Add the cooked spinach to the eggs, followed by the asiago and a little more than half of the basil leaves. Season with salt and pepper and give a quick stir with a wooden spoon. Return the pan to a medium burner and add the egg mixture. Top with the tomatoes, using a spoon to gently distribute them in the pan. Add similar-sized spoonfuls of ricotta cheese to the frittata, distributed equally throughout the pan. Leave on the stove until the bottom sets, 3 to 4 minutes, then transfer to the oven.

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Bake 15 minutes. Remove from the pan and flip onto a serving plate.

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