Apropos of nothing, I looked at my blog stats yesterday and saw that Life Through the Kitchen Window had received 11,111 views. I had a small thrill akin to the one that comes from seeing your odometer hit the same digit all the way across. Have you experienced the excitement of seeing 77,777 km displayed on your dashboard? Do I need to get out more?
This is a good question to mull over at breakfast. Remember that peperonata I made as part of the antipasti platter at my Italian dinner party? It adds even more thrill to breakfast than a numerological coincidence.
The morning after our party, I was inspired by a post I’d seen on the always entertaining, not to mention culinarily informative, blog Eggton to gently heat the leftover peperonata in a skillet, then break in four eggs and let them cook on the stove top for a couple of minutes. After that I slid the pan into the oven for ten minutes or so at 425º, or until the eggs were done to our liking. And voila, Skillet-Poached Eggs in Peperonata for breakfast! The combination of the eggs with the velvety-textured and tangy pepper and tomato mixture was delicious and a refreshing change of pace from the same old breakfast offerings. Genius!
A week or so later, inspiration struck again in the form of a comment from Chicago John (the mastermind behind From the Bartolini Kitchens ) about using peperonata in frittata. So, one evening after work, I whipped up a new batch of pepper-laden goodness and then proceeded to transform it into a frittata. Now, obviously this would have been faster if I’d had some leftover peperonata on hand, but even making it from scratch I was able to have my dinner in about an hour. Not too shabby for a delicious and satisfying entree. I had a quarter skillet, or two eggs’ worth for dinner, then the Culinary Enthusiast came home from the gym and had a slice. And then another. He liked it! The next day, I took the last cold slice to work, and it was a delicious step up from my usual lunchtime fare.
I definitely will be keeping peperonata in my repertoire, since it’s not only delicious but also versatile. It’s great on crostini as an appetizer, would make a terrific side dish to a meal of pork or chicken, and marries very well with eggs for breakfast, or brunch, or lunch, or dinner or as an evening snack. You get the idea: make it!
By the way, try saying ‘peperonata frittata’ three times, fast. Fun, isn’t it? This post has come full circle, proving that I do indeed need to get out more.
The peperonata portion of this recipe comes from my post, Peperonata ~ Star of the Anitipasti Platter, as I slightly adapted it from Kathleen Sloan’s Rustic Italian Cooking. I consulted a variety of sources to determine the method for making a frittata, and the result of my research is presented here.
Pre-heat oven to 375ºF.
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 3 cloves garlic, chopped
- 1 large red onion, sliced
- 1 large red bell pepper, cut into strips
- 1 large yellow bell pepper, cut into strips
- 1 large orange bell pepper, cut into strips
- 2 large ripe plum tomatoes, roughly chopped (I used tomatoes I froze in September)
- 1/4 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
- 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar (you could also use red wine vinegar)
- salt and freshly ground pepper to taste (remember, you’ll be adding lots of eggs!)
- 8 large eggs, beaten
In a large skillet, warm the olive oil over medium heat. Add the garlic and onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened (about 10 minutes). Add the sliced peppers and stir to coat with oil. Add more olive oil if required. Cook for about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are softened and beginning to brown. Add the tomatoes, parsley, vinegar and salt and pepper. Cook for about 10 more minutes, stirring from time to time. Since you’re going to be adding eggs to this mixture, try to cook it down so it’s not too runny. Once you’ve achieved the right consistency for the peperonata, pour in the 8 beaten eggs and stir together well. Let the mixture cook on the stovetop for about 5 minutes longer, then slide the skillet into the pre-heated over for about 15 minutes, or until the frittata has nicely set.