Posts Tagged ‘slow-cooking’

“Just when you thought you’d had enough green beans for a while…” Meredith sighed at lunchtime, as she bit into a piece of this green and yellow discus–a frittata with green beans.

Discus-like thing

Frittata is an Italian omelette–made the opposite way to a French omelette.

I’ve been guided in their making by the incomparable Marcella Hazan–the queen of Italian home cooking.

The “trick” is in the time it takes.

It’s cooked over the lowest heat, for about 15 minutes–a French omelette over the highest heat, for probably less than a minute!

The French version is fluffy–the Italian firm, but not dry; more like a pastry-less quiche–served in slices.

What they have in common, apart from eggs, is that you can fill them–frittatas or omelettes–with pretty much what you fancy.

In this version, green beans and onion:

1 onion–peeled and chopped

2 tablespoons olive oil

8 oz/250 gms green beans–cooked to tender, drained, and plunged into a bowl of cold water, then patted dry and cut into short lengths, ready to go into the frittatta mix

2 0z/50 gms parmesan cheese–grated

6 eggs

salt and pepper

a thumb-size knob of butter and a little more olive oil

  • Sauté the onion in the olive oil until it colours nicely–set aside to cool.
  • Break the eggs into a bowl and whisk them lightly to combine the yolk and the white.
  • Whisk in the grated cheese.
  • Season with salt and pepper.
  • Add the beans and the onions to the bowl and mix them in.
  • Heat the butter and the extra oil in a medium sauté pan [10 inch/26 cm] to hot.
  • Fold in the egg mixture and turn the heat down to the lowest available–even use a heat diffuser too if you have one [the object being to keep the frittata moist through slow cooking].
  • Cook for about fifteen minutes until there is just a little lake of liquid left on top.
  • Heat the grill to hot and place the pan under it for a couple of minutes, just to firm it up.

“Great finish to the bean season,” acknowledged Meredith, after helping herself to a second slice….

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This is taken from my book: Delicious Dishes for Diabetics which was published in August and is being reprinted–(hooray!).

Based on a recipe from Richard Olney’s Simple French Food, it’s useful company for pork or chicken. It can also serve as a vegetarian main course with some white beans or chickpeas.

The initial cooking helps to caramelize the fennel lightly–so it’s worth taking the time.

Serves 4

2 large or 4 medium fennel bulbs – tough outer part removed, cleaned up and quartered or cut into eighths, if the bulbs are very large

6 or more cloves of garlic – unpeeled, hooray!

3 tablespoons of olive oil 

salt and pepper 

6 tablespoons of water 

  • Put the fennel and the garlic in a pan large enough to hold all the quarters in a single layer.
  • Add the olive oil and a little salt.
  • Cook, uncovered, on a medium-low heat for 20 minutes, turning as the fennel colours–it should be nicely caramelized by the end.
  • Add the water, cover the pan and cook slowly until the fennel is super tender–about 30–40 minutes.
  • The quarters should hold their shape and be infused with a deliciously mild taste of the garlic.
  • Adjust the seasoning and serve.

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