Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Sausage, Vegetable and Gruyere Frittata

Sausage, Vegetable and Gruyere Frittata

If your mom is like mine, you should listen to her more often, as she probably has good ideas. Like the recipe for this frittata, the Italian answer to the French omelet. Unlike an omelet, which is cooked quickly with the fillings added last, frittatas are cooked slowly with the eggs added to the already cooked fillings and then broiled to set the eggs.

A few weeks ago, my mom emailed me about a frittata recipe she made. I thought it sounded really good, but I didn't make it right away. Then a couple weeks later she made it again and I thought, yes, I should really make this.

So this time I did. I don't know where she got the recipe, but I made some adjustments, so I feel comfortable calling it my own (with credit to Mom, of course). This is a simple dish that comes together fairly quickly. It's also quite flexible. You could easily omit the sausage to make it vegetarian, substitute a different meat (bacon, ham, chicken, turkey) and use a different combination of vegetables or a different cheese. I went with mild Italian chicken sausage, onion, zucchini, red pepper and rainbow chard with gruyere cheese, but you could use just about any green, mushrooms, broccoli, cauliflower. Just be mindful of the total quantity. A 12-inch frying pan is ideal for this, and it should be about half-full of cooked ingredients before you add the egg and cheese mixture.

Sausage, Vegetable and Gruyere Frittata

2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 to 3/4 lb. mild Italian chicken sausage, casings removed
1/2 yellow onion, diced
1/2 red bell pepper, diced
1 green zucchini, diced
1 punch chard (may use rainbow or Swiss), leaves removed from stems and cut into 2-inch pieces (stems discarded)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
8 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup shredded gruyere cheese

1. Preheat oven broiler with rack 4 inches below the broiler.

2. Heat 1 tbsp. olive oil in a 12-inch nonstick oven-safe frying pan over medium heat. Add the sausage and cook, breaking up with a spoon, until cooked through. Remove sausage from pan. Add another tbsp. olive oil to the pan and increase heat to medium-high. Add the onion, bell pepper and zucchini and cook until the vegetables are lightly browned, about 5-6 minutes. Stir in the chard, reduce heat to medium and cook, stirring occasionally until the chard wilts, about 10 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

3. Return the sausage to the pan and spread the ingredients evenly on the bottom of the pan. Whisk together the eggs and half the cheese in a large bowl. Pour the eggs and cheese over the vegetable-sausage mixture. Continue to cook on the stove to set the bottom of the eggs, about 3 minutes.

4. Transfer pan to the oven and broil until the top is firm, about 3 minutes. Spread the remaining 1/2 cup of cheese on top and broil an additional minute to melt and brown the cheese (watch to make sure it doesn't burn). Remove from oven and cut into wedges for serving.

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