How to Make Frittatas and Pizza Omelets

Frittata is the Italian name for an omelet but the way it is made is slightly different from the traditional French omelet. The added ingredients are either incorporated into the egg mixture when it is put into the skillet, as in the manner of a Spanish-style omelet, or are laid on top of the egg mixture when it is nearly set, as in the recipe below. In both cases, the frittata is cooked more slowly, over a low heat, and finished off under the broiler (or the grill as it is termed in the UK) or in the oven, close to the top heating element. They are ideal for a quick lunch or a more substantial meal.

How to Make a Bacon and Cheese Frittata

  • 2-3 rashers of bacon
  • ¼ small onion, finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp of butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tbsp (1oz / 30ml) of milk
  • ¼ tsp of basil
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • ½ cup (2oz / 60g) of grated cheddar or similar cheese
  1. Cut the bacon into small strips with a knife or kitchen shears and fry it with the onion for 3 minutes in a non-stick skillet or omelet pan with an oven-proof handle. Remove the bacon and onion and drain off the fat from the pan.
  2. In the meantime, whisk the eggs, milk and seasonings together (except for the cheese).
  3. Add a tablespoon of butter to the skillet or pan and heat it over a moderate heat (Medium-Low) until it is melted and foamed. Add the beaten egg mixture and turn the heat down to Low. After 1 minute, as the mixture starts to set, gently lift up the edges of the omelet to allow uncooked fluid to flow underneath. Repeat at 30-second intervals until the omelet is almost completely set (just a film of almost jelly-like fluid on the top.
  4. Now sprinkle the top of the frittata with the bacon and onions and top with the cheese. Place the frittata under the pre-heated broiler (or in the pre-heated oven approximately 3” (7-8cm) from the top heating element) and cook it for a moment or two more until the cheese is melted and bubbly.
  5. Serve immediately with crusty bread or additional sides.
  6. The same basic technique can be used for many other combinations, e.g. mushrooms and cheese, tomato and black olives, bacon, mushrooms & cheese, with the bacon incorporated into the egg mixture, hamburger beef & cheese, etc. The possibilities are almost endless.
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A similar technique can be used to produce a pizza-style omelet.

How to Make a Pizza-style Omelet or Frittata

For pizza-style omelets, the toppings are added when the omelet or frittata is just set. The base can either be a traditional omelet, not folded but instead left open, or a frittata, both cooked until almost set (a frittata tends to be a little fluffier than an omelet because of the slower cooking time). The desired toppings are then decoratively added and the skillet or pan is placed under the broiler again until cooked. If a topping of tomato paste is desired before the other toppings, quickly finish off the base omelet or frittata under the broiler (or in the oven) until only just set: do not overcook the egg base otherwise it may become leathery round the edges when returned to the broiler to cook the toppings.

Pepperoni Pizza omelet:

  • 1 tbsp of butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tbsp (1oz / 30ml) of milk
  • ¼ tsp of basil
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • 3 slices of green, red or yellow bell pepper, halved and deseeded, rounds of pepperoni
  • halved black olives
  • grated Mozzarella cheese
  1. Fry the bell pepper over a Medium heat for a couple of moments. Remove from the skillet and set aside on a plate.
  2. Add the egg mixture to the pan and turn the heat down to Medium-Low.
  3. After 1 minute, as the mixture starts to set, gently lift up the edges of the omelet to allow uncooked fluid to flow underneath. Repeat at 30-second intervals until the frittata is almost completely set (just a film of almost jelly-like fluid on the top.
  4. Now arrange the half slices of pepper on the omelet like the spokes of a wheel and lay slices of pepperoni and halved black olives in between. Sprinkle the frittata with grated Mozzarella cheese and cook it for one or two moments more until it is completely set and the cheese melts.
  5. Serve immediately with crusty bread or toast or with additional sides.
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Other pizza-style toppings:

The same can be done with cooked chicken, ham or bacon strips and pineapple or crumbled hamburger cooked separately with onion and diced tomatoes and added as a topping when the frittata is nearly set and sprinkled with shredded mozzarella or cheddar cheese.

In the latter case, brown the hamburger over a Medium heat and then drain off the oil. Add the onion and fry for a moment until translucent. Add the diced tomatoes and cook until heated through. Spoon the mixture attractively over the omelet.

Heat through and serve immediately with crusty bread or with sides for a main meal.

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