Sunday, January 16, 2011


Bev's Potato Frittata

OK it's not Friday, but the food muse calls.  I finally made something new this morning that's worth sharing, and since we're going on a little trip to Raleigh at the end of the week I won't even be here to put this up as a Food Friday post, so you're getting it now. 

This stick-to-your-ribs breakfast dish is what I always ordered at our favorite Sunday morning breakfast joint back in our Delaware days.  We'd drive into Rehoboth Beach to visit what we called "Bev's" after the proprietor.  The place did have a formal name, but we never really knew what it was.  It was attached to a motel on Wilmington Avenue, in the second block back from the beach.  Bev always had a cheerful greeting at the door for us and, after taking care of other customers, she'd stop by our table and bring us up to date on the current conditions of the restaurant biz in that tourist town, and on the indignities visited upon her by the owner of the mobile home park where she lived.  (The owner was a famous local fat cat about whom it was great fun to dish.  You loved to hate him.)  We were shocked the first time we went there after a season away to discover Bev had sold the place to her next-door competitor and retired.  We never had a chance to say goodbye.  Now, Bev's is gone and the lady herself is no longer a part of our life, but she lives on in this dish.

This frittata incorporates all the traditional "big breakfast" ingredients into a single, artery-clogging masterpiece.  It has your sausage, your bacon, your eggs, your cheese, your home-fries with onions and peppers all right there.  It's a once-every-few-months extravagance...and if you have a cholesterol problem there are low-fat substitutes.  

The sugar in the potatoes adds depth of flavor and helps them brown.

For the eggs:

6 slices bacon
3 breakfast sausage links (I use hot links with sage), cut into chunks
6 eggs
1/2 cup sharp cheddar cheese, grated
1/3 cup chicken stock
1/2 tsp salt
pepper to taste
1 tablespoon unsalted butter

For the potatoes:

2 tsp. olive oil
3 small Yukon gold potatoes, cut into small chunks (I don't peel them--up to you)
1 medium onion, coarsely chopped
1/2 large red or green bell pepper, coarsely chopped
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp sugar
pepper to taste

Cook bacon until crisp in a large oven-proof skillet, remove to paper towels to drain.  Crumble bacon.  Pour off excess bacon fat from skillet but do not clean skillet.  In same skillet, cook sausage chunks until no longer pink, remove and set aside with bacon.

Whisk eggs in a medium bowl, add salt and pepper, stir in grated cheese.

Over medium high heat, bring chicken stock to a boil in the skillet in which bacon and sausage were cooked.  Deglaze the skillet, scraping all fond off the bottom of the pan until it is smooth.  Continue cooking stock, stirring occasionally, until it has reduced to a syrupy consistency.   When thickened, stir into beaten eggs.

Place pat of butter in warm deglazed skillet and allow to melt while preparing potatoes.

Cook potatoes:

Heat olive oil in a non-stick skillet, add potatoes, onions and bell pepper.  Sprinkle with salt, sugar and pepper, toss all to combine.  Cover tightly and place over medium high heat.  Let cook without stirring 5-7 minutes to allow carmelization of potatoes to begin.  Lift lid, toss potatoes once or twice to re-distribute, then cover again and allow to cook another 5 minutes without stirring.  Repeat this process until potatoes are cooked through and as brown as you want them.

Assemble frittata;

Preheat oven to broil, if your oven requires it, and move an oven rack to a position immediately below the broiler, leaving just enough room for the skillet. Distribute bacon, sausage, and home fries evenly over melted butter in oven-proof skillet.  Pour in egg mixture, shake skillet to make sure eggs settle into all crevices between meats and potatoes.  Cook over medium heat for 5-7 minutes, or until cheese melts and eggs begin to set.  Remove skillet from stovetop and place under broiler, cook for about 5 minutes more, or until top of frittata is set. 

Remove skillet from oven and place on a rack, allowing residual heat in the skillet to finish cooking the eggs.  Cut into serving-size portions and enjoy.


splendid said...

ooohhhh my honey pie!
i can't wait to try this ralph!

thanks so much!

Mark said...

Ralph - timing is everything - and I should have seen this BEFORE I saw my doctor on's now on our "someday" menu. It looks great!

Anonymous said...

Yeah, this is much more complex than the other famous Ralphy Recipes plus I need a football team here to enjoy it with me. I doubt this would be worth Ann and me. But damn is it a winner. I shall copy and put in the forever drawer.

Ralph said...

Mark, it's just the kind of unhealthy concoction I know you crave.

Ralph said...

Z&M, it was too much for us, too. We ate half of it and will eat little pieces of it for breakfast over the week. It's really not that much trouble, just the extra step of making the home fries in addition to the eggs.

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