Add a Little of Something, or Sub This for That

Confidence in the kitchen leads to beautifully delicious things. You create a satisfying dish. You serve it to family and friends. They rave. You beam. Confidence boosted. Next meal. You recall your previous success. This time you feel free to add a little of something, or sub this for that, in the recipe that already delighted taste buds and tummies. Lo and behold, the next version is even better than the one before.

Such is the case with the evolution of my Tex-Mex Frittata. I made this at my day job last January. But the basic idea of an egg bake packed with vegetables, bits of flavorful meat and creamy cheese is a weekend staple at my house. I often whip one up on a Saturday morning. It’s delicious piping hot or at room temperature and the leftovers are good any time of day well into the work week.

My latest version is now officially called a Mexican Frittata Española. So named by me. Just today.

It’s so called because it incorporates the basic frittata structure. A vegetable and meat mixture is sauteed.

Beaten eggs are poured and swirled into the pan. It’s baked in a hot oven until puffy and ready to slice into wedges.

The Spanish version of this dish is called a Tortilla Española and contains potatoes, as does mine.

And because a life without avocado, cilantro and sour cream is not a life worth living, Mexican flavors seal the deal.

A couple of notes to ensure your success:

Be sure to use Mexican chorizo instead of Spanish for this recipe. And buy a good-quality chorizo. It’s flavorful and indulgent without being too greasy.

Despite my best efforts to Can the Cans, I haven’t found chipotle peppers in adobo sauce in anything but tin. Until I start making my own, I store the leftover can contents in a mason jar in my fridge. They last for months.

Finally, and most importantly: once you pull the piping hot frittata from the oven, under no circumstances should you remove the oven mitt from your hand until that hot egg bake is safe on the platter and the pan is sitting in the sink. If you remove the mitt, you will forget the pan you usually grab by the handle with a bare paw is as hot as fire. You will, for some unknown reason, want to relocate the pan. You will wrap your fingers around the blazing spear of metal and you will shout expletives profusely as you rip your hand from the source of intense pain. The people you are serving will cower in fear.

Your plate of breakfast will still taste amazing, but you will delight slightly less in it because of the throbbing and burning fury still happening throughout your hands and fingers.

Not that I’ve ever done this before.

That being said, make this. Love it. Build confidence. Get back in the kitchen.


Mexican Frittata Española

serves 6-8

Use this:

1/2 lb. Mexican chorizo

1/2 large yellow onion, chopped

2 lbs (about 4-5 medium) Yukon Gold or red potatoes, sliced 1/8 inch thick

1 tbsp canola oil

1 chipotle chili in adobo sauce, minced

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 1/2 cup cooked black beans (one can, rinsed and drained)

2 cups fresh baby spinach leaves

1 cup cherry or grape tomatoes, halved

12 eggs beaten and seasoned with salt and pepper

1/2 cup grated sharp white cheddar cheese

salt and pepper

Top This:

with any or all of the above: fresh cilantro, sour cream, avocado, salsa and hot sauce

Do this:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Heat a 12-14 inch, nonstick, ovenproof skillet over medium heat. Add chorizo and break up with a wooden spoon. After about 5 minutes, when chorizo is cooked through, remove crumbles from the pan with a slotted spoon and set aside.

Add onion to pan and cook until translucent, about 4 minutes. Add potatoes and canola oil and turn slices to coat. Season with salt and pepper. Cover and cook until a knife can go smoothly through the potato slices, but they are not mushy.

Add spinach, beans, tomatoes and chorizo to pan. Season with salt and pepper. Fold until all ingredients are evenly distributed.

Pour eggs over mixture. Swirl pan and lift potatoes with a spatula so the eggs slide between the layers of potatoes. Press mixture down into the eggs.

Top with grated cheese and put pan into the oven. Bake frittata for 15-20 minutes, until eggs puff up, the middle is set, and the edges are slightly golden.

Take pan out of the oven and let frittata rest for 5 minutes. Go around the edge of the pan with a spatula to loosen edges. Keeping your oven mitt on the entire time, carefully slide frittata onto a large cutting board or platter, using the spatula to help keep it together.

Slice into wedges, pile on desired toppings and serve.


4 thoughts on “Add a Little of Something, or Sub This for That

  1. i think that you are amazing. i love the fact that you took a hobby and turned it into something amazing that you share with all of us. i have 200 acres of land and didn’t have the courage to get chickens until now. if a “citygirl” like yourself can do it… so can I. Thanks…. keep it up.

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