It’s apple season again, and who doesn’t love the scent of apples and cinnamon and pastry and butter and …mmm…oh, sorry. I can get carried away by just the thought of an apple pie cooling on the counter. There is just something about the autumn season that is so rich and comforting: the crisp air, beautiful colorful trees, warm cider. And apples.
Apples are so versatile. Yes we all love apple pie, and all other manner of apple pastries. But they are useful in savory applications as well. Apples and onions are the base for a very nice winter soup, flavored with rosemary and walnuts. These two also make up the base for a delicious curry sauce. Apples are often sautéed in butter with a few savory spices to make a nice accompaniment to pork dishes.
Our homemade applesauce has become a fruit course staple at breakfast in the fall and winter months, but we also like to use apples in a savory dish now and then at our Maryland bed and breakfast. One of our favorite things for breakfast is our individual frittata. Usually a frittata is made in a large skillet or quiche dish and meant to serve several people. We like to make them to order and so we simply use our 8 inch pans (the same ones we use to make omelets).
In case you didn’t know, a frittata is simply an omelet that’s not folded over. And talk about versatile: anything you want to eat, you can put it in a frittata! They are great for using up leftover vegetables, meats, cheeses, whatever you have on hand. Even apples…
Sautéed apples mixed with sharp cheddar cheese and a little ham makes an incredible combination in an omelet or frittata. See for yourself:
Here is a recipe if you’d like to try this at home, but don’t hesitate to try out whatever combination of savories you’d like. And it’s not just a breakfast dish either. An apple frittata, a green salad and maybe a warm baguette and you’ve got dinner in just about 20 minutes.
1 Granny Smith apple
1 tsp. coarse raw sugar
4 large eggs
2 tsp. clarified butter
2 oz. sharp cheddar, grated
2 oz. sliced, Black Forest ham, roughly chopped up
salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Peel and slice apple into ½ inch slices (approx. 12 slices).
In a 10 inch frying pan (with an ovenproof handle), add 1 tsp. of clarified butter and set over medium heat. When butter is bubbly add apple slices and sprinkle with raw sugar. Cook until almost done, turning once. Remove from heat and set aside. The apple slices should be golden on the edges. Clean sauce pan.
In a medium bowl scramble eggs. Season with salt and freshly ground pepper to taste.
Using clean frying pan, add remaining teaspoon of clarified butter. When bubbly add scrambled eggs. With a spatula lift eggs from the side to the middle of pan letting the liquid eggs run underneath. Do this 3-4 times. When the top is still wet sprinkle chopped ham over it and fan apple slices over the top of the ham. Sprinkle with grated cheddar and put the pan into the hot oven. Cook frittata for 5 to 7 min. until the eggs are set and the cheddar is melted. Do not overcook. Eggs should not be brown.
Cut into quarters and arrange two pieces on each plate.