hot for frittata
Home Movies Tuesday!
Hello and welcome to Home Movies Tuesday! If you’ve found your way over by some miracle but are not yet subscribed, here, let me help you with that:
Hello, welcome to Home Movies! Today we’re making a frittata, and you can’t spell frittata without Samantha Irby, so I asked her if she would let me call her on the phone to interview her about frittatas. Effectively, this was just revenge for the time she asked me about my hot dog preferences on stage IN CHICAGO full-well knowing I wasn’t into the tomato slice.
Anyway, this specific charred kale frittata is my favorite one these days (and most days). It comes from this newsletter which was really just an excuse to talk about camping (a true *goes camping once* vibe even though I have been camping *more than once*, thanks), and now it’s here on a Home Movie. They grow up so fast! Watch below to get Sam’s frittata take on how to A. Use up the stuff in the fridge to make one, B. Do it WITHOUT poisoning yourself, then immediately go out and buy her books, subscribe to her newsletter, worship at the altar of one of the funniest people on the internet.
Thank you for tuning in, and see you later this week for Chef’s Kiss (available for paid subscribers only), where you’ll find the answers to the following questions:
-I have tried to make your goodbye meatballs a couple of times and I just cannot get them to not stick to the bottom of the pan, have them tear when I try to sear the next side, and it all just goes south from there and I end up with meat sauce. Help me out!
-Your oven/hob/range in your new place - who make is it and are you loving it? Looking to change mine and need a trusted voice.
-In your amazing home movies (that have become my weekly "what should I cook" guide), you are always hinting at ways to recycle/save ingredients... I want to reduce my food waste and would love a bullet-point list of food-saving techniques you use routinely.
-Which playlist can I switch to when I have exhausted the Cinnamon Rolls playlist on spotify (in my partner’s opinion)?
You may recognize this frittata from that time Alison went camping, and while it’s absolutely worth raving about a second time (it’s very, very good), this episode of Home Movies is less about this specific frittata and more about learning to appreciate frittatas for all they are: excellent vessels for using up whatever’s in your fridge, nourishing and sustaining, good for camping/hiking, something we should all be eating more of.
To help us prove frittatas are decidedly NOT boring, we have a very special guest appearance by the brilliant, deeply funny writer, New York Times bestselling author of wow, no thank you and we are never meeting in real life (you should read both immediately if you haven’t yet), and foremost frittata connoisseur of our time Samantha Irby. Sam coined the term garbage frittata, a delightful and inspiring idea and the absolute best way to use up whatever is starting to look a little sus in the depths of the crisper drawer. She’s our frittata queen, and you will be convinced by the end of this episode that frittatas are even FUN (we have fun)! Go forth, char some sad kale, and make the garbage frittata of your dreams.
Thank you to Grey Poupon for sponsoring this episode! You can find their new WINE here–grab a bottle while it lasts!
While we do highly recommend making this specific frittata, we mainly want you to walk away from this episode feeling inspired, confident, and excited about the possibilities a frittata has to offer. With that in mind, here are a few of our do’s and don’t’s for frittata success:
Use a cast iron or oven-safe non-stick skillet. Stainless steel is possible but may result in egregious sticking/heartache.
Cook the vegetables and frittata in fat to help things char without burning (Sam is a butter purist, Alison used olive oil, you can use either or a combination!).
Add things like the stems of the kale and other leafy greens for a variety of textures and to reduce your vegetable waste (swiss chard stems, A+ crunchines).
Let the kale (or any other vegetable you’re using) really char. Take it there! It can handle it and it will add a lot more flavor and texture to the eggs in the finished dish. .
Serve it with something creamy—Alison grates raw garlic into some full-fat yogurt and seasons it with lemon juice and salt (you can do that with mayonnaise/ sour cream, too).
Finish your frittata with fresh herbs if you’d like! Chives, parsley, cilantro, etc.
Put any raw vegetables in the frittata. It’s not going to save you any time in clean up (everything cooks in the same skillet), the vegetables will never really cook like you want them to (learn from Sam’s sweet potato mistake), and everything will lack flavor and texture.
Forget to add more oil before adding your eggs. It will make it easier to flip without sticking and give you a shiny, golden frittata.
Eat it right away. Counterintuitive for an egg dish, maybe! But frittatas are best at room temperature or even the next day.
Click HERE for a printable PDF.
charred kale frittata
makes one large frittata
Whatever you decide to add to gussy this frittata up/make it your own, the things that I feel like made it so fantastic was the char on the kale (stems and leaves!), keeping the onions a little chunkier than usual to maintain lots of good texture at the end, and letting the eggs brown on the bottom (like, really brown). I did flip mine to finish cooking the top, but you could simply broil it if you were not wanting to flip/not confident in your flipping skills.
2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for drizzling
1/2 medium onion, thinly sliced or chopped
1 large bunch kale, preferably Lacinato/Tuscan kale
Crushed red pepper flakes
8–10 large eggs, whisked to blend
Strip the leaves from the stems of the kale. Thinly slice the stems and tear the leaves into bite-sized pieces
1 cup full fat greek yogurt, mayonnaise or sour cream
1 garlic clove
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
Leafy greens, tender herbs, or a mix of both
Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large skillet (9”–10”, preferably cast iron) over high heat. Add onion and season with salt. Stirring fairly regularly, cook the onions till they’re tender and cooked through but still have some texture (an al-dente onion, if you will), with some good color/charring/frizzling at the edges, 4–6 minutes.
With the heat as high as it can go, add the kale stems, season with salt and pepper, and let cook for a minute or two before adding half the leaves. I like to use tongs, but using whatever you have, toss the kale in the skillet among the onions and olive oil. Without touching, let the kale cook at the bottom of the skillet–we are actively looking to almost burn the first layer of leaves here (aka char), so resist the urge to toss (this is where you tell yourself to relax!).
Okay, now you can toss the leaves again, just to let the leaves on top get some of that same char (this will also encourage wilting). Add the rest of the kale, season with more salt and pepper, and toss to incorporate. Let cook without touching it for a few more minutes.
Season your eggs with salt and pepper. Once the kale is wilted, bright green with bits of almost crispy char, reduce the heat to medium-high. Add another drizzle of olive oil around the edge of the skillet and add your eggs, letting them fry slightly around the edges for a minute or two.
Pop the skillet into a 375° oven for about 5-8 minutes. The edges should be golden and set, and the center will still be a little loose. From here, you have two options: Either turn on your broiler for a minute or two until the top is golden brown and set OR, remove the skillet from the oven, place a large plate on top of the frittata, flip the entire thing, and flip it back into the skillet to briefly cook the top for about a minute over medium-high heat (this is what I did, but either method would work). I found the skillet option to be not that tricky (not trickier than flipping an upside-down cake) and it gets you some nicely browned egg flavor on the top (plus, it looks cool, like a golden brown omelet).
To serve at home, whisk yogurt, garlic and lemon juice together in a small bowl and season with salt and pepper. Spoon this sauce onto a small plate, top with frittata and a scattering of leafy greens/tender herbs. Squeeze lemon and sprinkle flaky salt over everything before eating.
(To serve on the go, slice into wedges, place in a large piece of foil and sprinkle with a bit of flaky salt before wrapping to take with you on your travel adventure).