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Potato and Pepper Frittata

The Italian frittata, which resembles a French quiche minus the crust, is casual fare, typically served directly from the pan in which it is cooked. Plump and golden, it shows how no more than a few eggs, a handful of vegetables and a sprinkling of cheese can become a simple yet hearty meal to start the day.

Ingredients:

  • 2 Yukon Gold potatoes
  • 2 Tbs. olive oil
  • 1/2 cup chopped yellow onion
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 8 large eggs
  • 1 tsp. minced fresh rosemary
  • 3/4 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1/4 tsp. freshly ground pepper
  • 3 Tbs. freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

Directions:

Thinly slice the unpeeled potatoes. In an ovenproof frying pan, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the potatoes and turn to coat with the oil. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until almost tender, about 20 minutes. Uncover and stir in the onion. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is tender and the potatoes are lightly browned, about 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, preheat a broiler. Place the bell pepper on a baking sheet and broil, turning occasionally, until blackened on all sides, about 12 minutes. Transfer to a work surface and let cool until easy to handle. Leave the broiler on. Peel off the blackened skin; discard the stem, seeds and ribs and chop the pepper.

Stir the roasted bell pepper into the potato mixture in the frying pan. In a bowl, whisk together the eggs, rosemary, salt and pepper. Pour the egg mixture into the potato mixture and cook over medium heat until the edges begin to set. Using a heatproof spatula, lift the cooked edges of the frittata, and tilt the frying pan to allow the liquid egg on top to flow underneath. Continue cooking, occasionally lifting the frittata and tilting it again, until the top is almost set, about 4 minutes more.

Sprinkle the top of the frittata with the Parmesan. Place under the broiler until the frittata puffs and is golden brown, about 1 minute. Cut into wedges and serve hot, warm, or at room temperature. Serves 4 to 6.

Variation: Frittatas are versatile, allowing you to experiment with many kinds of vegetables and cheeses. To make an asparagus and goat cheese frittata, omit the potatoes, onion, bell pepper and Parmigiano-Reggiano. Blanch asparagus spears, cut into 1-inch pieces, then sauté in the olive oil just until heated through. Add 1 shallot, chopped, and cook until tender. Add to the egg mixture. Just before broiling, top the frittata with crumbled fresh goat cheese.

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Comfort Food, by Rick Rodgers (Oxmoor House, 2009).