Frittata, perhaps more than any other food, recommends this blog to new readers.
My chance choice of search engine-friendly wording for the headline of a 2010 post widens this blog’s reach to anyone looking for “no-stick frittata.” Go ahead and Google it. If I’d know that it would be this blog’s most popular entry to date, I wouldn’t have so prominently proclaimed myself incapable of producing dinner on a realistic time line.
But that’s where “back-pocket” meals like frittata come in. As food writer Daniel Neman showed in this week’s front-page spread for A la Carte, frittata really are the ultimate blank slate, suited to breakfast, lunch, dinner or anytime between. He even adapted the concept for a riff on the classic dessert crepes Suzette.
While I’ve planned plenty of frittata to feed a brunch crowd, I usually make them off the cuff, frequently just for myself. The inspiration often is a handful of potatoes or roasted vegetables that don’t constitute a second-round side dish. Sometimes cooked noodles that fall short of a full serving suggest “pasta frittata.”
Here’s an iteration of spaghetti pie that repurposes leftovers to avoid food waste, according to a recent story by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Remember, though, that this is a very loose technique. More eggs could be used, as well as less pasta. And there’s no reason the recipe couldn’t be prepared in a single skillet, starting with rewarming the pasta, provided it was oven-safe.
Leftover Spaghetti Pie
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 pound leftover pasta
Salt, to taste
1 teaspoon red-pepper flakes, or to taste
3 large eggs
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for topping
About 1/4 cup milk or light cream
1 cup cooked and crumbled sweet Italian sausage
1 cup diced tomato
Preheat over to 350 F.
Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add the pasta, season to taste with the salt and red-pepper flakes; toss to coat until warm.
In a large bowl, whisk the eggs and then stir in the cheese, milk or cream, sausage and tomato.
Pour warm pasta into bowl with egg mixture; toss to combine ingredients. Pour spaghetti mixture into a greased, 10-inch pie plate; push noodles up onto sides and bottom to form a crust. (Alternatively, press mixture into a springform pan.) Sprinkle with additional cheese, if desired, and bake in preheated oven for 25 minutes.
Serve warm or at room temperature, with additional red-pepper flakes.
Makes 4 servings.