Aren’t frittatas the absolute best? No matter what time of year they are one of the go-to vehicles for transforming on-hand ingredients into a delicious dinner. In the spring, young spinach, garlic scapes and Parmesan feel right. In summer, thin cross sections of tomato with basil and goat cheese make the grade at our house. This time of year we go for hearty winter kale paired with the nuttiness of Gruyère cheese and a touch of earthy, ground nutmeg. Nutmeg seems to enhance any dark, leafy green – if you can find whole nutmeg, try adding it freshly ground to your recipes with a little help from a small Microplane. The best frittatas often happen by chance – I call them “Kitchen Sink” frittatas, because they include everything but… left over roasted vegetables, snips of herbs hanging around, greens that are otherwise soup-bound. I don’t think I’ve ever met a frittata I didn’t like.
WINTER KALE FRITTATA WITH GRUYERE AND NUTMEG
2 tablespoons good-quality olive oil
1/4 cup thinly sliced red onion
10-12 large kale leaves, tough stalks and ribs removed, chopped
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon sea salt (or to taste)
freshly ground black pepper, to taste
8 eggs, room temperature
2 tablespoons half and half or milk
3 ounces, Gruyère cheese, finely sliced or grated
Preheat broiler on low, if your oven gives you the option.
In a large oven-proof skillet or cast iron pan, heat olive oil over medium-low heat. Add red onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until onions begin to soften, about 3 minutes.
Add the chopped kale to the pan along with the nutmeg, salt and pepper. Saute until the kale has reduced in size and is soft, about 5 minutes. Lower heat to low. Distribute the vegetables somewhat evenly across the bottom of the pan.
Pour the egg mixture over the kale and tilt the pan gently to evenly distribute. Lay or sprinkle the Gruyère on top of the top.
Cook over low heat until bubbles begin to rise though the top of the frittata and the rim of the eggs seem just set.
Place the frittata under the broiler to finish cooking. I prefer using a low setting on the broiler and placing the pan on the middle rack of the oven as to not blast the frittata with intense heat. Check the oven every minute or so to gauge how fast the top is browning. My broiler takes about 3 minutes total.
Remove from oven and let the frittata set for a few minutes before serving.
Serves 4 as a main.