When asparagus is in season, one of the first dishes that I like to make are these easy, baked frittate with asparagus and Asiago cheese. We often associate eggs with breakfast, but this quick dish makes for a wonderful light lunch next to a seasonal green salad!
What is a Frittata?
A frittata is an Italian dish that has an egg custard as a base to which a variety of other ingredients, such as cheeses, vegetables, and/or cold cuts can be folded in. It is cooked slowly over low heat and in many ways, it resembles a crustless quiche, especially when it is not cooked on the stovetop, but in the oven instead. Frittate are considered a frugal meal and an efficient way to use a good source of protein and all sorts of leftovers.
Ingredients for Easy, Baked Frittate with Asparagus and Asiago Cheese
- organic eggs (the fresher the better)
- extra virgin olive oil
- young asparagus
- green onion
- Asiago (or, Fontina) cheese
- salt and pepper
- fresh parsley (or, fresh chives)
Traditional Stove Top versus Oven Baked Method
The way to make a traditional frittata starts with a skillet at the stove top and finishes in the middle rack of the oven. This baked version of a frittata is more hands-off and, if a muffin tin is used instead of an oven-proof skillet, it makes perfect individual portions.
Five Useful Tips For the Perfect Individual Frittata
- Precook the vegetables by briefly sautéing them, because the baking time is not enough to cook them fully
- For dairy, use full fat milk or half and half. Light or skim milk is too watery for this recipe
- Use a measuring cup to pour the custard over the vegetables–it is much easier than using a ladle
- To ensure the frittate do not stick, use a non-stick muffin tin if possible, or, brush some olive oil or melted butter instead of using a spray. Always allow them a few minutes in the muffin tins when they come out of the oven for easier unmolding
- Do not over-cook the frittate! The eggs should puff in the oven and the center should slightly give to the touch. Remember that they will continue to cook once out of the oven because of the residual heat
How to scale this recipe
This recipe makes enough for three people, especially when served with a green salad on the side (and possibly bacon, ham, and toasted bread), or, enough for two very hungry people. You can easily double the recipe, using a regular 12-cup muffin tin or an 8″ oven proof skillet.
Packing and Storage
Frittate are super easy to pack and send to school, bring to work, or, have at a picnic. The filling for frittate can be so versatile, which is perfect if you want to clean up your refrigerator and use leftover vegetables, or, bits and pieces of protein. You can store them in the refrigerator for a few days and then reheat them gently in the oven. You can also cook the vegetables and make the egg custard ahead of time and just bake them at the last minute!
- 3 TBSP. olive oil
- 3-4 oz. young asparagus, trimmed
- 1 --- green onion, minced
- 4 lrg. organic eggs
- 4 TBSP. whole milk or half & half
- ½ tsp. salt
- ¼ tsp. freshly ground black pepper
- ¼ cup Asiago or Fontina cheese, coarsely chopped
- 1 TBSP. Parmesan cheese, freshly grated (for topping)
- 1 TBSP. fresh parsley, minced (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 375° F.
- Cut the tough ends of the asparagus spears and discard. Chop the remaining spears into ¼” pieces, reserving six of the tips. You should have about ¾ cup chopped asparagus.
- In a small skillet, heat two tablespoons of the olive oil and add the asparagus and the green onion. Season with a little salt and cook for just a few minutes to soften the asparagus. Remove from the heat and allow them to cool.
- Whisk the eggs, milk or cream, and the salt and pepper in a large measuring cup until well blended (this will make the pouring easier).
- Brush all six cups of a regular (3”-sized) muffin tin generously with the remaining olive oil. If you have a non-stick one muffin tin, all the better.
- Divide the asparagus and onion mixture evenly among the 6 muffin cups. Add the Asiago cheese on top of the vegetables. Next, pour the egg and milk mixture over the filling in each cup as evenly as possible, about two-thirds of the way from the top. Add the asparagus tips to top each muffin.
- Bake until the egg mixture puffs up and is soft but set in the center, about 15 minutes or so. Do not overcook them (the color of the egg custard should not be brown.)
- Sprinkle the top with some Parmesan cheese and allow them to sit for a few minutes. Using a rubber spatula, loosen the frittate from the muffin cups and slide them onto a serving platter. Sprinkle with some fresh parsley and serve immediately.
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The post Easy, Baked Frittate with Asparagus and Asiago Cheese appeared first on Marilena's Kitchen.