jalapeno-cheddar frittata with homefries
One of the very few benefits of working the night shift is the ability to pad around the kitchen in your underwear pajamas while the rest of the working world is slogging bleary-eyed through their Monday morning routine.
It’s these small victories that you must cling to.
You’ve probably already had two or three cups of coffee, why not another? It will give you the fuel you need for what lies ahead. You hose down your trusty moka pot, emptying last night’s grounds into a jar kept in the refrigerator. Why? You’re not positive, but you’re pretty sure you can recycle those grounds into your garden at some point.
A jar of dark, shimmering coffee beans is opened, its fragrance inhaled lustily; its contents spooned gently into a machine that will grind them mercilessly. Once pulverized into a fine powder, the beans are spooned yet again into a pot to be blasted through with steaming hot water, stripping them of their oil, their very essence.
It’s barbaric, really! But absolutely necessary.
Once you’re done torturing your coffee beans, you’ll set to work on the edibles. Some classic home fries paired with a not-so-traditional jalapeno-cheddar frittata. A little research reveals that you should have boiled some potatoes last night, leaving them in the fridge to cool. Psssh. And oops. No worries, you can boil them now and cool them on a wire rack. It’ll just take a leeetle more time. You can use that time for Netflix viewing or bathing or beagle snuggling or or quality one-on-one significant other time-spending. As it turns out you’ll have time for all that, plus several minutes of cat-poking. Potatoes sure do take their sweet time.
And I’m totally serious about the cat-poking. Poke this creature and see what happens. She might curl up like a roly-poly, she might slap you in the face or bite your toes, she might roll around chirping like a squirrel, she might high-tail it outta there. You just never know. Meet Chloe a.k.a. Coco, our “special” kitty:
And her associates Lucy
Um, yeah, sorry about that. Tangent. If you’ve boiled your potatoes and set them aside to cool while you wander about the house, you’ll probably need someone, say Eli, to ask you what’s up with the potatoes. Are they ready yet? Ravenous with hunger, you’ll head back to the kitchen.
Potatoes will be diced, onions sliced. Garlic minced, spices measured. Your trusty cast iron skillet will be heated, slicked with oil, potatoes slid gently off the edge off a board to sizzle in its confines. You’ll heat an oven, whip some eggs, dice and grate a little more. A sprinkle here, a sprinkle there. Sprinkle sprinkle everywhere? No, no. That’s not right. Sleep deprivation will have set in and with it comes silliness, possibly accompanied by a hint of ridiculousness.
Somehow the frittata will have made its way into the oven. Things are happening. Once the potatoes have developed a crispy golden crust, you’ll slide the onions on in there to wilt into tasty little bits while the potatoes get browner and crispier.
You’ll be pulling the puffy frittata out of the oven just as you finish spicing the home fries.
It’s a beautiful golden hue, like a sunrise.
And that, my friends, is brunch. In 559 words.
Jalapeno-Cheddar Frittata (adapted from bon appetit)
serves about 12
1/2 pound extra-sharp white cheddar, shredded
1/4 cup pickled jalapenos, drained and chopped
1/4 cup green onions, finely chopped
1/4 cup roasted red peppers, drained and chopped
1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped
9 large eggs
Preheat oven to 350. Spray an 8×8 glass baking dish with no-stick. Sprinkle cheese evenly over bottom of dish. Sprinkle jalapenos, red peppers, green onions, and basil over cheese.
Using an electric mixer, beat eggs in a large bowl until pale and slightly thickened, about 8 minutes. Pour egg mixture into baking dish.
Bake frittata until firm, about 20-30 minutes. Cool slightly, then cut into squares.
Can be made a day ahead. Cover and refrigerate, then reheat at 350 for about 10 minutes.
Home Fries (from Saveur)
1 pound boiled potatoes, cold and cut into 1/2″ cubes
4 tablespoons oil
1 small yellow or white onion, thinly sliced
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
salt and pepper to taste
Heat oil in a heavy (cast-iron if you’ve got it) 12″ skillet over medium-high heat. Add potatoes and cook, stirring occasionally until they start to brown, about 10 minutes.
Add remaining 2 tablespoons of oil, onions, paprika, cumin, salt and pepper to taste. Cook, stirring and scraping the bottom of the pan, until the potatoes have formed a golden crust and the onions are softened and browned, about 15-20 minutes.