It’s mid-week and you have a few little things hanging around in your fridge that need to be used. A frittata is the perfect vehicle to use up leftovers. Not only that, it’s a reason to make extra pasta so you can make a frittata on a moments notice.I love leftovers and I love to make frittatas. They are never the same twice. As you know by now, The Goddess does have her little imperfections and she sometimes has too many leftover bits lurking in her fridge. So tonight she decided to resolve that issue a tad. The Latin Lover had spaghetti with Ragù Sauce, or my version of a Bolognese sauce of sorts. He loves that, so when I cooked the spaghetti, I just threw a little extra pasta in so I could make a frittata for me, with leftovers for breakfast (I did mention that I love leftover leftovers too, right?)! I had a zucchini that had a remaining shelf-life of about 10 seconds and a wedge of onion sitting on my chopping board that I was going to have to put in a container, since I simply couldn’t throw it out like any normal person and I happened to have 3 eggs left in the carton, so I was feeling the frittata.
Anyway, this is what I did. You can add pretty much whatever you want or have leftover. I use 3-4 eggs for 2 cups of cooked spaghetti. You can use more eggs, but I just prefer it this way…you should do what you choose, but don’t overcook the eggs, please!
This is an incredibly flexible dish. If you prefer, you can even leave the pasta out! Just use more eggs. It is a great way to use up leftovers.
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 small zucchini, diced
- 2 tablespoons diced onion
- Large pinch of red pepper flakes
- Kosher salt (2-3 big pinches)
- 2 cups cooked spaghetti
- 3-4 eggs
- 2 tablespoon water or heavy cream
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 2 teaspoons oil
Heat a small well-seasoned sauté pan (one with sloping sides makes flipping the frittata easier); add the oil. Toss in the zucchini, onion and red pepper flakes; cooked for 2-3 minutes. Tossing the vegetables occasionally. Beat the eggs with the liquid. Add the cooked pasta and sprinkle with 2-3 big pinches of salt. Toss in the veggies and combine the whole thing. Add the oil to the pan, add the frittata mixture and lower the heat to medium-low. Stir a couple of times for the first 15-20 seconds, then gently push the mixture down and cover. Continue to cook for about 2-3 minutes, then flip the frittata over in the pan. With practice you will be able to do this in one motion, but if you are uncomfortable, the slide the frittata out onto a plate, place the skillet upside-down over the frittata and invert the plate and pan together. The “bottom” of the frittata is now on top. Continue to cook for an additional 2-3 minutes or until a knife inserted into the center comes out clean. Slide the frittata onto a plate and serve immediately, garnished with shredded fresh basil. You may wish to place a dollop of tomato sauce on top, or some shredded cheese, or as is. Sprinkle with some additional salt before serving.
Pasta Frittata Recipe©Marcia Lahens 2015. All rights reserved.
This goes together extremely quickly. You can have dinner on the table in less than 20 minutes from start to finish, so it’s a perfect mid-week dinner. If you add enough vegetables, it is pretty much a one-dish wonder. By the way, frittatas make a decent appetizer, too.
One thing to note about salt and pasta. Pasta requires more salt than most people realize. Since I don’t have an Italian grandmother who taught me how to cook Italian food “the right way”, I’m on my own! I’ve learned that sometimes our mothers did things because their mothers “did it that way”, the implication being if Mom did it, then it must be right. So, because of this little glitch in my ethnicity, I’m a bit of a heretic when I cook Italian food. I don’t salt the water I cook pasta in; I salt the pasta immediately after I drain it. An Italian chef taught me to do that. I like it better, because if I choose to use some of the pasta water (I sometimes make soup with it), I don’t have to worry about it being too salty. I do put a decent amount of salt on the pasta, about 1 1/2 teaspoons per pound of pasta. If the pasta doesn’t have enough salt, it will pull the salt out of a sauce and you’ll end up with a flat tasting dish. Have you recovered from this heresy yet? You will. And even if your Italian grandmother would spit on your grave if you commit such a heresy as salting the pasta instead of the water, you need to walk on the wild side every now and again. Try it…see how it works for you…let me know what you discover. By the way, we have way more fun on the wild side and we’re far less stressed out…cook with abandon!