September 6, 2011

Friends, Frittatas, and Fun

It's really hard to believe that Labor Day has already come and gone.  We had a wonderful weekend with our good friends from NYC, Ms. K and her fiance, MD.  I spent much of last week planning the menus for the weekend and Sam was good enough to indulge me in my pursuit of creating the best meals possible on a (pseudo) budget.  Ms. K is a special person in my life, and last year, instead of doing the one thing she asked for for her birthday, I was a terrible friend and didn't make her the chocolate peanut butter cupcakes she wanted.  Instead, I cried at work and Ms. K ended up taking me out for a very dirty martini to drown out my sorrows.  Is she a good friend or what?
This weekend, even though it wasn't her birthday, I was determined not to mess up.  I made those chocolate peanut butter cupcakes (I'll post about them later this week) and succeeded in my goal of making this wonderful couple as full and happy as humanly possible.  What can I say?  I think I was meant to be an Italian grandma.
The weekend started with a delicious frittata and bloody marys (with gin, of course) to greet our guests after their arduous 1 1/2 hour flight.  It was a perfect way to start off the weekend.  The best part?  Sam and I got to eat the left over frittata for dinner tonight with a delicious cobbled-together gazpacho made with all of the leftover vegetables we had in the fridge.  A thrifty and truly revived leftover meal.

Tortilla Espanola Frittata
Serves 8 as sides

6 eggs
5 small red potatoes, thinly sliced and par-boiled
1/2 an onion, diced
1/4 cup heavy cream
2 tbsp. olive oil
Salt & Pepper

Turn on the broiler. Beat the eggs, cream, salt & pepper in a large bowl.  In an oven-safe, non-stick frying pan heat the oil and add the onion, sauteing until just tender.  Add the potatoes and cook for another 2 minutes.  Turn down the heat to medium and pour in the egg mixture.  Let cook until the bottom of the frittata is set (about 5 minutes) then place in the broiler to finish off the top.  This should take about 2 minutes, but watch in case this part goes quickly.  The frittata will have risen and puffed up quite a bit and should be nicely browned and set on top.  Serve immediately, or put in to the fridge a eat over the course of a few days.

Bloody Gazpacho
Serves 4


1/2 red onion, chopped
2 Roma tomatoes
1 large tomato
1/2 of a hothouse cucumber, chopped skin-on
1 celery stalk, chopped
2 cloves garlic
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup bloody mary mix
1/8 cup red wine vinegar
salt & pepper
Chopped parsley and cucumber for garnish (optional)

In a food processor, process the onion, tomatoes, cucumber, celery, garlic, salt & pepper until finely chopped and nearly soupy.  Add the liquids and process until mixed.  For optimum flavor, let sit in the fridge for at least an hour.  Serve chilled.

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