Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Fresh Herb and Zucchini Frittata

I was sure my zucchini plant was done producing. The voluminous leaves were coated with a unhealthy glaze of white and the vine was collapsing under the weight of the cold fall weather. But when I went to visit my eggplant and pepper plants and see what they had to harvest, I found that my zucchini plant had gifted me with two healthy size squash, with at least four babies on the vine. Because I'd had a nice break from this prolific plant, their appearance filled me with delight instead of the hesitance it might have just a few weeks ago. My diverse culinary with zucchini is more than amply documented in previous posts, but when I tried to think of a way to use up this late season crop I realize there was a glaring omission in my zucchini recipe roster - frittatas! 

It feels like I've put every possible vegetable into a frittata, and I've rarely been disappointed. Other than vegans, who doesn't love a frittata? You can make them as healthy or indulgent as you like, fill them with almost any ingredient, serve for any meal, and they take just minutes to make. This frittata blends tender zucchini and onion seamlessly into the rich egg and cheese base, with garden-fresh herbs permeating each delicious bite. I quite love this particular combination, in part because I grew many of the components myself, it still stands that its simplicity the reason for its success. This particular combination may not perfectly fit your garden's bounty as it did mine, but it's still a wonderful template for to filling your belly with whatever odds and ends you have lingering in the fridge.

Fresh Herb and Zucchini Frittata
adapted from Eating Well
serves 2

4 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1 cup diced zucchini, (1 small)
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/4 cup slivered fresh mint
1/4 cup slivered fresh basil
1/4 teaspoon salt, divided
Freshly ground pepper, to taste
4 large eggs
2 ounces shredded fresh mozzarella or crumbled goat or feta cheese

1. Heat 2 teaspoons oil in a 10-inch nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add zucchini and onion; cook, stirring often, for 1 minute. Cover and reduce heat to medium-low; cook, stirring occasionally, until the zucchini is tender, but not mushy, 3 to 5 minutes. Add mint, basil, 1/8 teaspoon salt and a grinding of pepper; increase heat to medium-high and cook, stirring, until the moisture has evaporated, 30 to 60 seconds.
2. Whisk eggs, the remaining 1/8 teaspoon salt and a grinding of pepper in a large bowl until blended. Add the zucchini mixture and cheese; stir to combine. Preheat the broiler.

3. Wipe out the pan and brush it with the remaining 2 teaspoons oil; place over medium-low heat. Add the frittata mixture and cook, without stirring, until the bottom is light golden, 2 to 4 minutes. As it cooks, lift the edges and tilt the pan so uncooked egg will flow to the edges.
4. Place the pan under the broiler and broil until the frittata is set and the top is golden, 1 1/2 to 2 1/2 minutes. Loosen the edges and slide onto a plate. Cut into wedges and serve.

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