Jewish Food

Not Your Bubbe’s Recipe: Egg Salad Frittata

Ditch the mayo for a healthy egg dish with fennel, ricotta, and rosemary Read More

By / March 6, 2013

I’ve said it in the past, and I will say it again; mayonnaise is the bane of my existence. It’s this mushy, gooey, blubbery, mass of disgusting. I know that there is something incredibly un-American about despising mayo, but what can I do—I honestly cannot tolerate it.

My grudge against mayonnaise convinced me that I hated tuna fish for most of my life and has created a love/hate relationship with egg salad. You see, I love eggs, I love salad, but I really, really, hate mayonnaise. There’s even something slightly redundant about mixing mayonnaise with eggs being that mayonnaise is actually made out of egg yolks. What this really means is an egg salad sandwich is a cholesterol monster framed in bread.

I can’t be certain, but I’d wager that the first person to combine hard-boiled eggs with mayonnaise was most likely French. Yet, the first prepared mayonnaise was sold at a deli in New York: “Hellman’s Blue Ribbon Mayonnaise.” Most likely, just around the time they started putting mayonnaise in jars, they started mixing it with hard boiled eggs and serving it at that very deli, just like they’re serving it at kosher delis to this very day. Egg salad has been made by bubbes, synagogue spread committees, smorgasbord enthusiasts and kosher delis for generations; each one with their own perfect recipe for it.

I respect the classics, and I can understand that even if I don’t like them there’s most likely a reason that they’re considered classic. Crisp onions and dense egg flavors have always been a winning combination, and that’s why I didn’t forget them in this revamped version of traditional egg salad, but I wanted to give it a light and simple flavor. In order to do this, I replaced the fatty mayonnaise with some low fat ricotta cheese and a splash of refreshing lemon juice.

Keeping in mind the ease of creating a crowd-pleasing egg salad, this recipe is a simple but elegant frittata. This version is perfect for brunch too, and like the standard egg salad can be made ahead of time for convenience. As we all know, the best egg salads have bits of onion and perhaps a hint of some fresh herbs and seasoning. That’s why in this recipe you’ll see some fennel to give it a kick, and some fresh rosemary to deepen the flavor.

Not Your Bubbe’s Egg Salad Frittata
Serves 4

1 Tbsp fresh rosemary (packed)
8 large eggs
1\4 cup of milk
Salt and pepper by taste
3 Tbsp lemon juice
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 large fennel, thinly sliced thinly
1\3 cup ricotta cheese

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

2. In a large bowl, whisk together eggs, milk, salt and pepper, and half the lemon juice.

3. Heat your olive oil in a medium sized oven-safe skillet over a medium high heat. Add your fennel slices and the rest of your lemon juice and sauté until they begin to become translucent. This should take less than 10 minutes. Then lower the heat under your skillet to medium low.

4. Slowly pour your egg mixture into the skillet while mixing them gently with the fennel slices. Let the eggs cook for 2 minutes.

5. Now add your ricotta cheese to your skillet by spreading it around evenly in teaspoon sized heaps.

6. Cook your eggs for another 2 minutes.

7. Place your frittata in the oven and cook for 11-15 minutes. The frittata is done when it looks as cooked as you like your omelets.

8. Slice your frittata into wedges and serve warm or at room temperature.

(Photo by the author)

Also try:

Not Your Bubbe’s Purim Poppy Seed Scones

Not Your Bubbe’s Caribbean Matzoh Ball Soup

Not Your Bubbe’s Tu B’Shevat Seder