About Beth

Beth, along with her husband, Mike, is co-owner of two Italian Deli/Markets in St. Louis - Viviano’s Festa Italiano. When not creating yummy new menu items for the deli, she’s the pediatric research lab supervisor at Washington University School of Medicine. Read more out about Viviano’s Festa Italiano.

About Irene

Irene loves to think, read and dream about food. She enjoys cooking & eating in general. Although she demures about her talents, Irene has a finely-tuned palate that her friends envy. She bakes on occasion. The rest of the time she's creating memories with her family and friends. . . or she's learning a new needlecraft technique.

About Deborah

Deborah is a wife, mother, grandmother, traveler, bootlegger, and a very poor speller! As Victor Hazan so eloquently puts it, Deborah has chosen Umbria to be the home of her soul. When she can’t be there in body, she spends her free time cooking & reading about Italy. She blogs mostly about food and about trips – past and future – here: Old Shoes New Trip.

About Doug

Doug lives in Eastern Ontario in a farmhouse built in 1903. He is a retired teacher with four adult children, a wife, a son-in-law, two Irish step-grandchildren and one grandson who he is lucky to hang with a lot. He has way too many books. Doug also blogs at To Slow Time Down.

About Cindy

Cindy lives in Eagle River, Alaska where her freezer is always full of salmon, halibut & shrimp. Cindy participates in several regular cooking challenges. You can read more about her cooking and life in the last frontier on her blog, Baked Alaska.

About Sandi

Sandi is a true Southerner, but a traveler & Italian cook at heart. She lives in Alabama and knows more about fried green tomatoes than fricassees. Her family owned the WhistleStop Café for many years. Sandi also blogs at Whistlestop Cafe Cooking.

About Jan

Jan, a serious home cook, has owned “Essentials” since 1992. She is passionate about all things Italian, especially the cuisine & the language. Jan blogs about her travels (next trip Italy May/June of 2010) at: Keep your Feet in the Street.

About Jerry

Jerry is a food obsessed Canadian. He learned to love Italian food as a child while eating the meals prepared by his Napolitano uncle. He learned to cook Italian foods by watching his uncle cook these feasts for the family. This love of Italian food has been honed through serious personal experimentation in eating and cooking. Willing to try most anything once, Jerry isn't so sure about tripe! Jerry also blogs at Jerry's Thoughts, Musings, and Rants!

About Palma

Palma is a Marriage & Family Therapist in Palm Desert, CA. She’s an Italian-American with a passion for cooking, entertaining, & travel to Italy. She’s always planning her next culinary adventure to Italia on her blog, Palmabella's Passions

About Kim

Kim is our permanent sub and the image above gives you a good idea of the look on her face when she realized she was drafted. Kim loves to eat, drink, travel and cook - probably in that order. When she's not here, you can find her organizing and leading food, wine and beer tours in Europe as co-owner and operator of GrapeHops or blogging at What I Really Think.

« Frittata with Tomatoes, Onion and Basil | Main | Frittata with Asparagus »

Frittata with Artichokes

One of the more challenging aspects of this year-long cook-a-thon was that we weren't able to change the order of the recipes - Deborah was clear - cook your way through the book in order . . . it mattered not if artichokes weren't in season . . . cook them. One learned quickly to not mess with the rules, 'twas a subject not to be broached . . . not unlike politics or the best manner in which to cook Melanzane alla Parmigiana in Italy.

Through the power of technology we found a way around this though - we could cook ahead and post on the appropriate date. By doing this we were able to post on the blog in the same order the recipes appeared in the book and still were able to cook with the freshest ingredients.

I'm sure Marcella would approve of us only wanting to use the freshest ingredients possible.

One of my recipes was an artichoke frittata but I was scheduled to post it on August 21. Guess what the quality of the artichokes I might find then would be like. EWWWW Artichokes are a wonderful springish vegetable. I made my frittata in May using nice fresh artichokes and am posting it in August to keep Deborah from hunting me down.

See. Everyone is happy!

I've eaten many frittatas over the years - in fact, when I make an omelet it is more like a frittata than a traditional omelet. I don't flip them, fold them, or do any of those things that one does when one is making an omelet. Rather, I dump the eggs in the hot pan, let them set, and then put it in the oven until cooked through. It turns out that this is Marcella's technique as well.

Well, Marcella's technique is far more poetic than that but that is why she earns a living writing cook books and I merely eat my way through cook books.

The most complex part of this dish is preparing the artichokes. Good heavens, they are a devil to clean, trim, and prepare. Hazan provides detailed instructions on p.p. 57 - 59 and reminds you to be sure to rub the cut areas with fresh lemon so that the surfaces don't get discoloured. As with all of Marcella's detailed instructions - they work - the woman clearly knows her techniques. Thank goodness she has written them so well so that we home cooks can learn them as well.

Once the artichokes are prepared for cooking the dish comes together quickly. In fact, I was having it for breakfast and I didn't have a chance to get my toast ready before the frittata was done. Speedy.

This was an amazing frittata - who knew that a frittata would be such a successful vehicle for artichokes? Of course, we North American cooks would be tempted to add more vegetables and dump on cups of cheese. Don't! Let the tender fresh artichokes, at the peak of their game, speak for themselves. You won't regret it.

Comments (1)

Marcella Hazan:

An artichoke frittata is the queen of all frittatas for me, and if your photo is any indication Jerry, you paid it the respect it deserves. There is no point in weeping about the lack of tender young artichokes of the Venetian lagoon or of the gardens of Liguria. That would be an artichoke frittata to make you sing, whatever your vocal endowment might be. But I wonder whether you were able to use that baby artichokes that have become available even in the supermarkets of southwest Florida. They are easier to clean and sweeter than the big globes.

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