I took a long walk this morning to clear my head before a full weekend of writing. Although we had a little snow and freezing rain yesterday on the official first day of spring (!), it has already disappeared. The light is soft and diffuse and there is a definite springtime feel in the air.
With a (partial) book deadline looming before Easter I haven’t been able to spend as much time as I’d like here on the blog. But I made this quick frittata with leftover pasta the other night and I wanted to share the recipe. I used leftover spaghetti aglio, olio, e acchiughe (spaghetti with garlic, oil, and anchovies). But most leftover spaghetti would work, as long as the pasta isn’t drenched in sauce. Spaghetti with clams makes an excellent frittata, as does spaghetti with zucchini.
Also, you don’t have to have wait for leftovers; you can cook a fresh batch of pasta, drain it and go from there. The seasonings in this recipe are just a suggestion and can be switched up according to your own taste. Although this isn’t a seasonal recipe, it seems appropriate for spring, with all the eggs mixed in. (And this version happens to be meatless, in case you are observing a meatless Lent).
Do you have a favorite version of spaghetti frittata? I’d love to hear about it in the comments.
Leftover spaghetti makes a delicious frittata. Cooked first on the stovetop and then under the broiler, the noodles on top turn browned and crunchy. My favorite spaghetti frittata comes from leftovers of spaghetti aglio, olio, e acciughe (spaghetti with garlic, oil, and anchovies) but plenty of other pasta leftovers would work, too. Just be sure those leftovers aren't doused in sauce or the frittata may not set properly.
- 3 cups leftover cooked spaghetti, or 4 ounces dried spaghetti
- 6 large eggs, lightly beaten
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 4 to 8 mashed anchovy fillets (optional depending on the flavors in your leftover spaghetti; I use Rizzoli alici in salsa piccante, which are hard to come by; substitute good-quality imported Italian or Spanish anchovies in olive oil)
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh herbs (basil, marjoram, oregano, thyme, or a mix)
- 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt, or to taste
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, Pecorino Romano, or other good grating cheese
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
If using dried pasta, bring a pot of water to a boil and salt generously. Add the pasta and cook according to the manufacturer's instructions until al dente. Drain in a colander set in the sink.
Combine the eggs, garlic, anchovies, herbs, salt, and a generous grinding of pepper in a large bowl. Stir in the cooked spaghetti, making sure they are thoroughly coated with the eggs. Stir in the cheese.
Position an oven rack 4 to 6 inches from the broiler and turn the broiler on.
Heat the olive oil in a nonstick frying pan (I use a well-seasoned cast-iron skillet) over medium heat. When the oil starts to shimmer, pour in the spaghetti-egg mixture and use a fork to distribute the noodles evenly around the pan. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook until the eggs are almost set and the frittata is nicely browned on the bottom, 8 to 10 minutes. Check by using a silicone spatula to lift the edge of the frittata. Reduce the heat to lower if the bottom of browning too quickly.
Slide the pan into the oven and broil, checking often, until the frittata is completely set and golden-brown on top, about 3 minutes. Let the frittata cool for a couple of minutes before transferring it to a serving platter. Serve warm or at room temperature, accompanied by a salad or steamed broccoli and some good bread.