Last Sunday, for Mother’s Day, my family and I drove half an hour north and half an hour west to our favorite organic U-Pick farm, Bloomfield Farms. In celebration of Mother’s Day, the farm had arranged for a local chef to prepare brunch. I’m sorry I forgot to snap I picture of my meal because it was divine–braised baby artichokes served alongside creamy polenta with local cheese, and topped with poached eggs sprinkled with thyme. I had meant to photograph my meal, but I was so hungry by the time I sat down to eat that I forgot entirely. (We didn’t make it to the brunch until after we had picked kale, chard, fennel, leeks, strawberries, bok choy, artichokes and little gem lettuces–enough to fill two huge shopping bags.
Once home, there was lots of cleaning up, produce sorting and washing and kale “processing”… So much so that when the dinner hour drew near, no one had the energy to whip up anything fancy, but we did want to use several of the vegetables from our great bounty, so I made my favorite standby dish: the frittata.
This dish takes about 20 minutes to prepare and in addition to being fast and easy, it’s nutritious and comforting. If you’re having guests over, it’s the perfect dish for brunch or lunch, and you can easily dress it up by turning it into a quiche with a bit more milk or cream added to the egg mixture and a pastry crust.
2-3 leeks (or 5-7 baby leeks), cut into thin slices and carefully rinsed and dried
1 handful of chard (approximately 5-7 leaves)
1 garlic clove, finely chopped or crushed
2 tbsp butter or olive oil, or a combination of the two
2-3 oz smoked salmon*, chopped or broken-up small
5-6 large organic eggs
3/4 cup milk
Sea salt and fresh-ground pepper
8-10 fresh basil leaves
Parmesan cheese, freshly grated or Parmesan cheese substitute, such as Rawmesan
Turn your toaster oven or regular oven to broil.
In a small cast-iron pan over medium heat, melt 1 tbsp of the butter (or oil). Add in the leeks and cook, stirring frequently until completely tender and slightly translucent. Add in the garlic and chard and continue to cook until the chard has wilted.
Using a whisk, beat the eggs in a medium-sized bowl. Whisk in the milk or cream and 1/2 tsp of salt and 1/4 tsp pepper. Turn down the heat on the leeks to low. Pour in the egg mixture. Allow to cook until the outer edges of the egg mixture has set and you can tell some of the center area is starting to set. (You can easily tell this by giving the pan a gently little shake and seeing how “runny” the egg mixture is. It’s movement will slow significantly as it starts to set.)
Lay the basil leaves on top of the egg mixture and sprinkle all with Parmesan cheese (or faux). Place under the oven until the egg is completely set and golden brown.
Serve warm with soup or a side salad.