Frittata is an Italian egg-based dish similar to an omelette or crustless quiche, enriched with additional ingredients such as meats, cheese, vegetables or pasta. It may be flavored with herbs. They are so versatile that I never make them the same way twice and they are perfect for breakfast, lunch or dinner. It is a great way to get more veggies into my family’s diet and everyone in my house is pretty happy when I make them. The kids especially like a slice with a little ketchup drizzled on top.
Pre-cook 1/3 cup of quinoa in 1/3 cup of water for 15 minutes until the water is absorbed. Set aside.
This frittata was a veggie version. But, sometimes I check out my fridge to see if there is any leftover ham, chicken or pork. Any leftover meat or veggies are perfect for a frittata!! Cube it and throw that in too. Otherwise, pick any veggies that you have on hand and chop them.
I was pretty excited that I was able to harvest my first batch of asparagus from the garden today. Since it is a small handful, it will not be enough to serve for dinner, so into my frittata it goes!!
Use a medium-sized fry pan that can be placed in the oven, under a broiler. Sautee the veggies in a tablespoon of extra-virgin olive oil until softened.
Once the veggies are done, spread them out evenly in the fry pan and place the cooked quinoa on top. Quinoa is perfect because it will settle to the bottom of the dish and give it some crunch, almost like a crust. This is the perfect time to add leftover meat.
Wisk 5 eggs in a small mixing bowl and season with salt and pepper to taste. Gently pour the eggs over the veggies and quinoa evenly. I strategically placed a few slices of sweet baby red peppers to fancy it up. This is the perfect time to sprinkle a little shredded cheese or grated parmesan if you’d like.
Cook over medium heat until the eggs are almost completely set.
To finish cooking the eggs, I place it under a broiler a few minutes until the top is cooked and golden brown.
Slide the frittata out of the pan and cut into wedges to serve.
Lunch is served!!
My asparagus are really striving to grow, but temps have plummeted once again and the growth has stunted. Hopefully the sun today will help warm the Earth! At least I am seeing some sign of spring…..finally.
Looks like I need to get out there and weed again! The ground in too soggy to walk on yet after all of the rain and flooding in the Chicago area the past few days.
I found something new that I am going to try. Yesterday, I bought a bunch of onion sets in the produce section at my local grocery store. I have stuck them in the ground this chilly morning and have no idea what to expect. I hope for good results….but we will see. Guess this is an experiment! If anyone has any pointers – please let me know!
Oh a couple of weeks ago I planted spinach seeds. Yay for sprouts of spinach!
Now warm up Chicago!!
I would love to hear how your veggie garden is coming along!!
Happy Spring! Well at least we finally had some sign of spring for a few days and now have drifted back to a touch of winter. But it sure makes me happy to see my garden has started to show a sign of spring because the asparagus is just starting to pop out of the ground. I am hoping to get a decent harvest finally this year, since it takes are few years to produce. Asparagus is my favorite vegetable and aside from the bulbs blooming, that is probably my favorite part about this time of year. Plus, finally good bunches of asparagus are available in the grocery store. So until I can harvest them myself…
This asparagus soup recipe was in my local newspaper and I can honestly say I never had this type of soup before. It was perfect comfort food to make for the rainy and chilly temps that arrived and reminds me that warmer temps are on the way!
Plus, I enhanced it to make it a healthier creamy soup. It was so easy and quite yummy!
2 lbs. asparagus, woody ends trimmed, reserve 8 spear tips
1 chopped onion
2 stalks of celery, chopped
1 carrot, chopped
1 clove of garlic
3 TB olive oil
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
5 cups reduced sodium chicken broth
1/2 cup plain yogurt
Kitchen tip: I like to control sodium by using chicken soup base because I can add more water and reduce the measurement of the base. Use 5 cups of water and 3 teaspoons chicken soup base. I think the flavor is still good.
It a heavy stockpot, add olive oil and sautee onion, celery, carrot. Cook for 3 minutes, then add garlic, salt and pepper. Add asparagus and cook for 5 more minutes. Add chicken stock and simmer for 20 minutes. Blanch the reserved asparagus tips in water for 3 minutes. Once the soup is done simmering, use an immersion blender or puree the soup in batches in a blender. Return the soup to the pot and stir in the plain yogurt.
Garnish with the asparagus tips.
A few days before Easter, I stopped at the Wilton Store and was able to sample a couple limited edition Candy Melts. I was totally blown away by the lime flavored melting wafers, so I purchased a bag even though I wasn’t sure what I would do with them (and I wasn’t sure if I could resist eating them on the way home!). Since I had extra pound cake batter when I made my Easter Lamb Cake, I made a dozen cupcakes. Now to figure out how to use the lime flavored Candy Melts.
The butterflies were so simple to make! I spread a large sheet of wax paper on my counter and piped the melted wafers into the shape of butterfly wings. Once the outline of the butterfly wings were piped onto the paper, I used a toothpick to drag some of the chocolate from the inside of the wing to the outside to make the design. Make a few extra matching wings in case a few break. Once the chocolate has set completely, then can gently be peeled off of the wax paper and carefully placed in the icing on an angle.
You must try the lime flavored Candy Melts, but hurry since they are a limited edition!
Happy Easter! Easter is a holiday that brings back a lot of memories from my childhood. One of my favorite memories is the Polish tradition of baking the Lamb Cake, then placing it in a basket to take to church on Holy Saturday to be blessed with samples of the food we would eat for Easter dinner. The basket would even include decorated hard-boiled eggs, lamb molded butter, salt and pepper shakers and a small carafe of wine.
I borrowed my Mom’s cast iron lamb cake mold. It is very important to grease the pan and every nook and cranny very good, then dust with flour!
Close your eyes, take a deep breath and say “I only eat this cake once a year”.
My Grandma’s Pound Cake
yields two lamb cakes (or one lamb cake and 12 cupcakes)
1 lb. butter, softened
2 cups sugar
9 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon baking powder
3 cups flour, sifted
Preheat oven to 350°. Grease both sides of the cast iron lamb mold, then dust with flour.
Cream the butter and sugar with a mixer until light and fluffy. Add vanilla extract, the gradually add one egg at a time, scraping the sides of the bowl. Once combined, reduce mixer speed to low and gradually add the flour and baking powder.
Place the batter into the bottom of the mold. Cover and bake for 45 minutes, then uncover and bake 10 more minutes until browned.
I also made 12 cupcakes with the remaining batter. Bake in the same oven for 25 – 30 minutes until toothpick comes out clean.
Gently unmold the cake and let cool completely before decorating. For this cake, I used cream cheese icing and piped it in swirls. Raisen eyes are very traditional.
What are you traditions for Easter?
This perfectly pink birthday is fit for a little prima ballerina! Complete with a beautiful pink swirl rosette cake adorned with a gorgeous ballerina figurine. My daughter was so excited to keep the ballerina figurine on a shelf in her bedroom, a nice keepsake that she will always remember this birthday by. This ballerina cake complements the theme, in addition to, matching pink ballerina partyware, ballerina tutu picks and cupcakes and a beautiful centerpiece of fresh pink tulips in a vase laced up with a pink satin bow.
Since I filled my ballerina cupcakes with a whole strawberry, I wanted to have the cake filling compliment the flavor. The following recipe was used for filling in between the two cake layers.
1 – 16 oz. bag of frozen strawberries (thaw in bowl with 1/4 C sugar to make syrup)
1/3 cup granulated sugar
3 tablespoons cornstarch
1 teaspoon lemon juice
Mash strawberries and drain reserving the juice. Add water to the strawberry syrup to make 1 1/4 cups. In a saucepan, combine the strawberry liquid, sugar, cornstarch and lemon juice. Stir until the liquid boils and thickens. Cool completely, then mix in the strawberry pieces. Refrigerate.
Cream cheese icing, devil’s food cake and strawberry filling is a delicious combination that everyone enjoyed!
The rosette pattern encompassed the entire cake. Using a large star tip, start in the middle of the cake and create little circular swirls. This technique is actually very easy! The ballerina figurine was approximately 5 inches tall and made the perfect cake topper.
The cake turned out so pretty and delicate – just like a ballerina!
Happy Birthday to my little ballerina!!
It is not often when I create a post that is not food related, but I thought this was just too cute to pass up and not share. For my daughter’s 2nd birthday party, we did an owl painting activity with my kids and niece. Check out my prior posts for the owl cookies and owl cake that were made to celebrate this birthday and read on to see how we made the owl painting that will be a keepsake to remember for the birthday girl.
I bought a couple of inexpensive 16″x20″ canvases from our local craft store. Using Crayola washable finger paints the kids painted their handprint onto the brown branch that I had painted before the party. Each kid got to pick a color for their owl. After the party, I enhanced the painting with the eyes, beak, talons and brushed the background light blue. This painting will be hanging in our playroom and our niece is going to get one as a party favor. Imagine how much fun this is for a kid’s birthday party?
The Birthday Girl’s – 2-year-old