I do love a multi-purpose dish: you know, one which will do for a quick supper, or a leisurely brunch; a lunchbox or picnic; one which is great hot, but equally good straight from the fridge. Even better if it’s a dish that will take whatever you can throw at it: strong flavours, odds and sods from the fridge, lots of vegetables.
The frittata ticks every box: great hot, great cold, sufficiently impressive to serve to a crowded supper table, and structurally robust enough to be sliced and packaged up. It stands up to just about any ingredient: it’s great with chorizo or other sausage meat, it can take spices and herbs, I’m not sure I can think of a veg or cheese I wouldn’t try in there.
And it’s quick to make: the name comes from the Italian word for ‘fried’, and refers to the conventional technique of cooking the eggs – at least initially – in a skillet or heavy bottomed frying pan. All it needs is a relatively short cook over a low heat on the hob, and then popping under the grill for under five minutes, and you’re ready to go.
This is a vegetarian version: rippled with strips of roasted red peppers (I embrace laziness and buy those beautiful jars stuffed full to the brim, and gleaming), and studded with potato, onion, peas and a generous handful of manchego.
Makes: Serves 6
Takes: 20 minute
Bakes: 5 minute
200g new potatoes, cut into inch chunks
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 small onion, diced
200ml whole milk
100g mature cheddar, grated
2 roasted red peppers, sliced into strips
100g peas (frozen is fine)
125g diced manchego
- Place the potatoes in cold, salted water and bring the water up to a fast boil. Cook the potatoes until tender: to check if they’re ready, pierce them with the blade of a sharp knife – if they fall off the blade, they’re cooked. Set to one side to cook.
- Heat the grill to medium-high. While it is heating, add the olive oil to an oven-poof 8 inch pan and cook the onion in it over a low heat until it is softened but not coloured.
- Crack the eggs into a large jug or spouted bowl, and whisk in the milk until smooth and combined. Add the grated cheddar, and season generously with salt and black pepper. Stir the cooked potatoes, sliced red peppers, peas and manchego through the egg mixture.
- Pour the mixture gently into the pan and cook over a low heat for five minutes until the bottom has set but the top is still wobbly.
- Transfer to the grill for 3-5 minutes until the top is set, golden and bubbling. Remove from the grill carefully, using a heatproof towel on the handle of the pan. Remove from the pan and allow to cool before slicing into wedges.