This recipe was inspired by Harrison Ford’s character in the film Morning Glory. When the film ended I was left pondering a couple of questions: What exactly is a frittata (I’d previously had one for lunch at the canteen at work and to me it was just an omelette served at lunch time instead of breakfast)? And, What makes a frittata so special that the character only made it for the people that were special to him? I decided to do some research and have some fun in the kitchen finding out.
I now know that a frittata normally consists of eggs beaten with milk or cream that is poured over cooked meat or vegetables and slowly baked. Some people think of it as a crust-less quiche. It’s is normally eaten cold so it is perfect as a picnic food. However, I’ve found that I prefer to eat it warm, and it’s a brilliant dish for using up meats and veggies that you find in the fridge at the end of the week.
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In a frittata the meat or vegetables are cooked off before the egg is added so that any water they release evaporates. This gives the egg a firmer texture once it is cooked. The pan should also be really hot before adding in the eggs as this produces a fluffier frittata.
In essence I think a fritatta is definitely a bit more special than an omelette. Adding the cream to the egg, and herbs to the filling gives it a richer flavour. I also add minced garlic to the egg mixture which takes the flavours to yet another level. Indeed a fritatta is now my new go-to brunch recipe.
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Preparation Time: 5 minutes
Cooking/Baking Time: 25 minutes
- 4 large eggs
- 60 ml double cream (1/4 cup)
- 60 g grated cheddar cheese (1/2 cup)
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 80 g mushrooms sliced (3 oz)
- 60 g spinach roughly sliced (2 oz)
- 4 spring onions finely chopped
- 120 g ham chopped (4 oz)
- salt and pepper to taste
- 0.5 tsp dried mixed herbs
- Pre-heat oven to 180 °C fan (200 °C conventional / gas mark 6 / 400 °F).
- In a large bowl whisk together the eggs, cream, cheese and garlic.
- Heat oil in an oven-proof frying pan over a medium heat.
- Add the mushrooms and cook for around 2 minutes. Then add in the spinach and cook for a further 5 minutes until any water they release has evaporated.
- Add in the spring onions and stir for around a minute before adding in the ham.
- Turn up the heat to high. Season with salt and pepper and mix in the herbs. Stir for another minute until the pan is sizzling.
- Spread the mushrooms and ham out using a wooden spoon then pour the egg mixture on top.
- Remove from the hob and place in the oven for 20 minutes until set.
- Serve warm or cold.
- The ham and mushrooms and spinach can be substituted with other fillings just be sure to cook them before adding the egg to release and evaporate water they give off.
- The double cream can be substituted for milk, just use 40 ml (1/8 cup + 1 tbsp) of milk instead since it has a thinner consistency.
- A plant based double cream alternative (such as Elmlea Plant) can also be used here to reduce the dairy and fat content.