Saturday, February 27, 2010

Frittata with Spinach, Sausage, Peppers, and Eggplant

It would be a complete understatement if I said my kids didn't like helping me in the kitchen.
It has gotten to the point where I hardly get to do anything and they start fighting over who gets to stir or add this ingredient or whatever.

I love having them help and love the fact that they are so interested in cooking/baking.

On a Friday night, a couple of weeks ago, my 5 year old daughter told me she wanted to make dinner. I got out some veggies and we started discussing the options.
This frittata is what we ended up with.
I kid you not when I say that my 5 year old made this dinner almost without any help.
She chopped (with me holding the knife with her) sauteed (I watched), whisked the eggs, measured, layered, etc.
She really did all the work and she was so proud and excited to eat what she had made.

The great thing about this meal is that you will end up with roasted veggies and cooked sausage/onion mixture, which will give you a head start on dinner for a couple of extra nights.

Another thing about this frittata is that you can mix and match the veggies and protein to whatever you have on hand at the time.
You could roast mushrooms or zucchini or whatever you have on hand. You could use chicken, ground turkey/beef, tofu, or any other protein in place of the turkey sausage.
You could use thyme or rosemary instead of the chives. You could also add cottage cheese or feta to the egg mixture. Be adventurous and mix it up!

We have started having a frittata once a week using whatever veggies are in the fridge.
I love having the leftover pieces for breakfast later in the week.

The best part about having kids help in the kitchen is that they really want to eat what they create. I did not have to bribe or plead with my kids to eat this. My daughter was so happy that she made it, she gobbled it up and her siblings were so proud they gobbled too.
Not to mention, it was really delicious.

Frittata with Spinach, Sausage, Peppers, and Eggplant by Mary Ann and R (age 5)
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 yellow bell pepper, chopped
1 small eggplant, chopped
2 Tbls olive oil, divided
1 large onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 pkg Lean Sweet Italian Turkey Sausage, (I used Jennie-O)
1 6 oz bag baby spinach
10 eggs
2 Tbls chopped fresh chives
1/4 cup skim milk
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.
Place chopped peppers and eggplant on a baking sheet. Drizzle with 1 Tbls olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Roast for 15 minutes. Set aside. Reduce oven temperature to 400 degrees.

Heat 1 Tbls olive oil in a large skillet. Add chopped onion and saute for a few minutes. Add sausage and break up into small pieces. Add garlic and cook until sausage is cooked through, 6-9 minutes. Place half of sausage/onion mixture in another container and refrigerate for another use.
Add baby spinach to sausage/onion mixture left in skillet, and saute, until wilted. Set aside.

In a large bowl, crack 10 eggs. Whisk to combine. Add chopped chives and milk. Season with salt and pepper, and whisk until combined.

Spray a 9x13-inch pyrex dish with cooking spray. Spread the sausage/spinach mixture on the bottom of the dish. Add half of the roasted peppers and eggplant (put the other 1/2 of veggies in a plastic container and refrigerate for another day).
Pour the egg mixture over the sausage/veggies and make sure all veggies are covered with the eggs. Sprinkle the shredded mozzarella cheese over the top.

Bake in the 400 degree oven for 20-23 minutes.


Maria said...

I am not an egg person so I always LOAD my frittatas with tons of veggies. Love the ones you included

Marie Rayner said...

Mary Anne, I love frittatas, and yours looks exceptionally tasty! Love all the veggies!

Sweet Cheeks said...

This looks amazing. Your a good sport. little hands "helping" can be overwhelming, but it is great to see them get so excited out it.

Chef Aimee said...

Aw! As harrowing as fighting is, Iove that your kids battle for kitchen time! My nephew is 4 and we make pizza together and he helps my sister with various aspects of meals and loves it! I hope his interest stays in the kitchen forever!
This frittata looks delicious, btw!

Eliana said...

What a great story. I hope that when I have children they will be as enthusiastic about being in the kitchen as yours because this frittata looks fantastic.

Unknown said...

Sounds like you've got a little future chef on your hands :) If your kids also do dishes please send them this way!

Delicious Dishings said...

I don't think I would ever have though to add eggplant. It must have been a great addition. I made a frittata a while ago with some artichoke hearts, sundried tomatoes, and fontina -- love the versatility. I think it's great that your kids get so excited about helping out in the kitchen.

P.S. I just posted about some mini quiche... I bet your kids would enjoy making them!