I raved about frittatas here and threatened to post a recipe. Well, the time has come my friends. A frittata is a base of eggs to which you add anything you want and cook it all in one pan. Frugal (this is the place to use up all your little leftover pieces!), super easy, but best of all, VERY tasty.
This is one I go to again and again using any greens I have (chard, spinach, or kale) and any meat I have, though a spicy sausage usually adds the best flavor. Of course you don’t have to add the meat at all, but I usually do.
Only 7 ingredients needed (if you don’t count salt and pepper and oil for the pan!): garlic, onion, greens (chopped chard here), sausage or any leftover meat, eggs, milk (or water if you don’t do dairy), and cheese. I’m using Parmesan here, but have used feta, goat, and all kinds of shredded cheese.
Really you can see how flexible this is – you can make it to your preferences or whatever you have in the house.
Chop the onion and add it to a heated skillet with a tablespoon of olive oil. Mince the garlic and add to the pan. Cook until onion is starting to brown, then add the sausage. This sausage is precooked, but if it’s a raw sausage (like Italian), add it a little sooner and cook it with the onion.
Cook and stir over medium heat for about a minute before adding all the chopped chard. Stir a little then cover the pan and let the greens steam for about 3-5 minutes while preparing the eggs.
Beat 4-5 eggs (for a 12-inch pan) and 1/2 c. milk or water in a bowl, adding some salt and pepper. Stir in about 1/2 c. of the grated (or crumbled…) cheese leaving a little for the top later.
The chard should be nice and steamed by now. Remove the lid and cook, stirring, to evaporate some of the liquid, about 3-4 minutes.
Pour the egg mixture over the ingredients in the pan. Do not stir. Put the lid back on and cook over medium heat for about 4-5 minutes, until the edges of the eggs are set.
Start the broiler preheating.
Here’s the tricky part: using a spatula, gently pull up on the edges while tipping the pan, allowing the raw egg in the middle to run to the edge and under the cook egg. Do this all around the edge until most of the raw egg is gone.
It should look a little like the picture above: mostly set, but still some uncooked egg visible.
Now, the pan needs to go under the broiler and if you don’t have a pan that is all metal, like me, this is what I do: cover the handle with a little piece of foil. I just return this piece to the cupboard and reuse it over and over for this purpose.
Put the frittata under the broiler and cook until no raw egg is left, about 4-5 minutes. Since ovens vary, I’d keep a close eye on it – it can start burning very quickly.
It should be nicely brown with all the egg cooked through. I always poke a knife in the middle just to make sure the egg is cooked.
Well, I didn’t always, but after serving it with raw egg dripping off the spatula, I do now.
Then I sprinkle it with 1/4-1/2 cup of the remaining cheese and put it back under the burner just for a few seconds until it melts.
I usually make this in a non-stick skillet so I can remove it to a large platter for serving (like the first picture), but I have served this directly from the skillet as well.
I took this picture to give you a serving idea: it’s sure a great way to use up those vegetables coming from the garden in August! And the cost? Well, since all the vegetables came from the garden, this meal was only about $4.00. If I left the meat out, it would be about $1.00! Even buying the vegetables on sale, this is still a low-cost meal in addition to being quick.
And yes, that’s a green tomato, but it is ripe. It’s an heirloom called “Green Zebra” and I’m growing it for the first time this year after reading many times how this variety wins taste tests for great flavor. I must say I was pleasantly surprised after I got past the idea that I wasn’t eating a bitter green tomato- it does have great flavor.
Swiss Chard (or other greens) and Sausage Frittata
- 1/2 medium onion, chopped
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 Tb. olive oil
- 1 lb. sausage (any kind)
- 4 c. chopped greens (chard, spinach, kale)
- 4-5 eggs (depending on size of skillet)
- 1/2 c. milk or water
- salt and pepper to taste
- 3/4 c. grated cheese (Parmesan, feta, goat, cheddar…)
- Heat a large skillet (preferably non-stick) with the oil, then add the onion and saute about 2 minutes. Add the garlic. If the sausage is not pre-cooked, add it with the garlic and cook all together. If it’s the pre-cooked kind, wait about 3-4 minutes and add, cooking just to heat through.
- Add the chard (or other greens), stir a bit, and cover for about 4 minutes to steam.
- Whisk the eggs and milk or water together, seasoning with salt and pepper. Add about 1/2 cup of the cheese and stir to mix.
- Remove the cover and stir the mixture in the skillet. Let it cook a little more, allowing any liquid to evaporate. Pour the eggs evenly over the top. Do not stir. Cover and let the eggs set around the edges and somewhat in the middle.
- Turn on the oven broiler to preheat a bit.
- Using a thin spatula, lift the edges and tip the pan so the liquid egg from the middle runs to the edge and under the cooked egg. Continue all the way around the edge until most of the egg is cooked.
- Put the pan under the broiler, covering the handle with foil if it is not metal. Let it broil 3-5 minutes until all the egg is cooked and the top is browning.
- Remove and sprinkle with remaining egg and broil for about a minute more to melt the cheese.
- Serve from the pan or remove to a platter by running a spatula all along the edges and under, then tilting the pan to slide it on to a plate.
A 12-inch skillet serves 5-6
For more great tasting, low cost meals check out $5 Dinner Challenge.