Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Got Leftover Pasta? Add Eggs = Breakfast Frittata

Sometimes a dish made with leftovers and another ingredient becomes more than the sum of its parts. Witness the frittata. Last night for dinner, Significant Eater and I had bucatini all'Amatriciana along with a side of a fennel, blood orange and olive salad - very Batali and I should've taken a picture.

Now, the first question when we're done with our dinners is generally "Is there any more?" Fortunately, last night there was. A confession - I often make a bit more pasta than will be served, so that there are some leftovers. And when it's all'Amatriciana, those leftovers are great; guanciale, tomatoes, pecorino and parmesan are all pretty tasty, don't you think?

So, here's what to do. First, stash that leftover pasta (I had around 6 - 8 ounces) in a container in the fridge, so the next day you'll have it to use...molto importante.

Tomorrow, take 4 - 6 eggs out of the fridge along with the pasta...this all depends on the size of the pan you use, but somewhere in that number works for me. By the way, I've got this really cool, 20 year-old 9 1/2" Circulon pan that works great for a frittata. And it's the only thing I use it for. You can make frittata in lots of different pans, but once you find one that works, use it and use it and use it. Here's a pan that looks similar to mine, from the Circulon site...remember, they don't make 'em like they used to.

Let the eggs/pasta sit for at least 30 minutes to take the chill off. While waiting, preheat your oven to 300-ish, and when the oven's heated (and here's my totd - your oven takes a good 30 minutes to preheat and stabilize, not 15, not 20 but a good 30, and if you've got a pizza stone in there -you do, don't you? - it takes 45 - 60) , heat up a tablespoon each of butter and olive oil in your pan over medium want the butter and oil nice and hot. Whisk the eggs in a bowl with salt & pepper, add the pasta, maybe a handful of chopped parsley and grated parm if you've got it and stir it up good, add it to the pan and it will look something like this...

Doesn't look like much, does it? Shake the pan a bit, turn the heat down to low-medium, and let it cook for about 5 minutes... then, transfer to the oven and check it after 5 minutes and every few minutes thereafter. Oh, I used to do the whole flip the frittata onto a plate, slide it back into the pan and cook on the stove top thing. It's a pain in the ass...and I think the gentle heat of a LOW oven does a better job at cooking the eggs to perfection...hey, if it's absolutely necessary or you don't have an oven, go ahead - but don't say I didn't warn you when you're cursing at the egg left on that plate. Okay, so you want the custard set nicely, but not dried out. You want...

I like to turn the cooked frittata out onto a paper towel covered cooling rack, which keeps moisture from condensing on the bottom while it cools. You'll have to do some flipping, and it's all hot, so be careful. Serve those lefttovers warm, room temp or cold - it's all good.


  1. I love leftovers. That looks particularly good. Amatriciana is an ideal pasta sauce for that purpose.

  2. Yes it is. After all, it's sorta bacon and eggs, isn't it?

  3. Man, that looks fantastic...I can feel a craving coming on ^_^