Sunday, January 20, 2013

sausage and spinach frittata

Sunday brunch is my favorite meal of the week. Because it's Sunday, I will spend a few extra minutes staring into my refrigerator, trying to get inspired.

Eggs are definitely a friend to the Paleo community. It's the one exception to the "no dairy" rule and such a versatile ingredient. Scrambled, fried, hard-boiled, poached.. I'll eat it in any form (except raw because I'm not that hardcore).

I haven't made a frittata in a while. But I whipped up a good one today that was so so incredibly perfect. Yes, I said perfect. And I mean it! Don't be intimidated by the word frittata, we're just dealing with eggs.

Sausage and Spinach Frittata
About 6 servings

8 eggs
1 cup sausage crumbles (about 2 good-sized spicy sausage links, uncased)
1 cup sauteed veggie mixture (about 1 small onion + 1 red bell pepper, diced small)
1 cup uncooked baby spinach
olive oil 

**NOTE: I didn't add any extra seasoning because I used a spicy sausage. Feel free to add some s+p and/or fresh herbs to amp this up!

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2. Dice onion and red bell pepper and set aside. I prefer a smaller dice, which seems to make for a more balanced frittata. 
3. Prepare sausage crumbles. On the stove top, heat a saute pan on medium to medium high heat. Add a drizzle of olive oil to the pan. Once the pan is hot, break up the sausage into fairly small pieces and drop into saute pan. Do not stir sausage around constantly. Allow to brown a bit and then flip over to finish cooking. They should be in crumbles but not crumbs-- there's a difference! The more you stir, the more crumbs you will make. When the sausage is cooked, place into a separate bowl. Leave all the sausage grease in the pan.
6. Prepare veggie mixture. Still on medium to medium high heat, add the diced onion and bell pepper to sausage grease. Cook veggies until they soften. The onions will soften a bit more than the red bell pepper. Then turn off the heat and let veggies cool down.
7. Put it all together. In a medium mixing bowl, lightly beat together eggs with a whisk. Add cooled veggie mixture and 3/4 cup of the sausage crumbles to eggs and mix together. Gently stir in spinach.
8. Lightly grease a baking dish with olive oil. Pour entire egg mixture into the dish and spread so mixture is evenly distributed. Scatter reserved 1/4 cup of sausage crumbles to the top of the egg mixture.
9. Bake in preheated oven for about 35 minutes or until fully cooked. If you pat the top of the frittata, the egg should feel like it's springing back.
10. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for about 5 minutes (or as long as you can wait!) before serving. If your baking dish was well-greased, the frittata will start pulling away from the edges as it cools.

No milk, cream, cheese, bread crumbs, whatever crazy things people add these days.. This frittata doesn't need all that. It maintains such a wonderful, tender consistency because of the low and slow baking. As long as you don't keep opening the oven to check it, it will turn out beautifully.

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