This is the time of year when everything is just beginning to emerge from the ground, but there isn't too much to eat out of the garden yet (however, if you're a "pasture comber" like me, there are always plentiful amounts of wild edibles to forage). The chickens and ducks are also laying heavily (in our case, 14 eggs PER day), so many of my spring and summer recipes use high volumes of eggs.
If you are like me, this is the time of year when the lust for fresh greens hits the hardest. The good news is that there are some vegetables ready for eating this time of year - beyond the normal sorrel and kale - and with a little foraging, you can prepare a delicious meal.
This recipe can be made either vegetarian or non. If you are a vegetarian, simply omit the sausage portion of the ingredients list. You are also not limited to the vegetables given below - feel free to experiment with whatever is growing in your own garden this time of year!
EARLY SPRING FRITTATA RECIPE
- 12 eggs
- 1 lb locally-raised pork sausage (NOT the links - I mean just the "loose" plain ground sausage)
- 1 large handful/bundle of freshly-picked asparagus stalks, chopped into ~1 inch long chunks (discard stalk ends)
- 2-3 early spring Walking Onion bulbs, peeled and chopped
- 1 large handful dandelion leaves, chopped
- 1 small handful freshly-picked oregano leaves, chopped
- 1 small half-handful freshly-picked thyme leaves, chopped
- 1 cup breadcrumbs (preferably from homemade, day-old sourdough bread)
- 1 cup grated cheese (we generally use cheddar)
- 1/2 cup milk
- Dash of cayenne pepper
- ~2 tbsp butter
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Place butter in a large frying pan, and turn heat on to ~medium. Saute pork sausage and onions until pork is fully cooked and onions are clear (usually about 5-10 minutes). Toss in asparagus, and saute for another 1-2 minutes. Remove pan from heat, and pour ingredients into a medium mixing bowl. Toss in dandelion leaves, oregano, and thyme, and add breadcrumbs, milk, and grated cheese. Mix all ingredients together. Add 12 eggs, and mix again thoroughly until yolks are broken and all ingredients have satisfactorily combined (you can, alternatively, beat together the 12 eggs in a large measuring cup and then pour them in with the other ingredients, but I never do this as it simply dirties an extra dish and anyway it's just as easy to mix the eggs with everything else in the mixing bowl).
Pour all ingredients from mixing bowl into a buttered pie dish. Bake in oven for 40-45 minutes, or until top is golden brown and center doesn't wobble like liquid when you gentle shake the pan. Allow to cool 10-15 minutes, then serve warm.
This recipe is excellent for both breakfast and dinner!