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Asparagus and Potato Frittata

Asparagus and Potato Frittata
Italian frittatas are made by combining various ingredients with eggs and cooking the mixture on the stovetop. Here, the process is simplified by finishing the frittata in the oven.

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 lb. thin asparagus
  • 3 to 4 Tbs. olive oil
  • 2 large green onions, chopped
  • 6 to 8 small red potatoes, unpeeled, cut into
      slices 1/8 inch thick
  • 1 tsp. salt, plus pinch of salt
  • 1/2 tsp. chopped fresh tarragon
  • Freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 2 Tbs. snipped fresh chives, plus chive blossoms
      for garnish (optional)
  • 3 Tbs. unsalted butter
  • 11 eggs
  • 1/3 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
  • About 1/2 cup shredded Swiss cheese
  • 1 bunch watercress, tough stems removed

Directions:

Cut or snap off the tough ends from the asparagus and place the spears on a steamer rack over boiling water. Cover and steam until tender, about 2 minutes. Remove from the steamer and cut into 1-inch lengths. Set aside.

In a large nonstick sauté pan over medium heat, warm 3 Tbs. olive oil. Add the green onions and sauté until soft and translucent, about 4 minutes. Add the potatoes, the 1 tsp. salt, tarragon and pepper and sauté until the potatoes glisten, about 3 minutes, adding the remaining 1 Tbs. oil if needed to prevent sticking. Cover and cook until the potatoes are nearly tender, 6 to 8 minutes. Uncover, increase the heat to high and cook, stirring constantly, until the potatoes are browned, 7 to 8 minutes. Stir in the chives and asparagus and remove from the heat.

Preheat an oven to 375°F.

In a nonstick fry pan or ovenproof sauté pan over medium-high heat, melt the butter. Meanwhile, in a bowl, whisk the eggs until blended. Stir in the pinch of salt and the Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese and season with pepper. Pour the eggs into the hot pan. Stir gently in the center and, using a fork or spatula, carefully lift the edges and gently push the eggs to one side of the pan, tilting the pan slightly to allow the uncooked eggs to flow underneath. Cook until thickened, 3 to 4 minutes. Spread the vegetables evenly over the eggs. Sprinkle the Swiss cheese on top. Transfer the pan to the oven and bake until the eggs are set and the cheese melts, about 15 minutes. The cooking time will depend on the size of the pan and whether the vegetables are still hot.

Remove from the oven and let stand for a few minutes, then cut into wedges and serve, garnished with watercress sprigs and chive blossoms.
Serves 8 to 10.
Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Lifestyles Series, Brunch Entertaining, by Janeen Sarlin (Time-Life Books, 1999).