French Quarter Frittata
Yield - 12 Brunch or Luncheon sized servings
1 LB VERMICELLI PASTA (Boiled very "Al Dente" almost dry)
1/4 LB FRESHLY GRATED PARMESAN CHEESE
1/4 LB FRESHLY GRATED ROMANO CHEESE
1/4 BUNCH CURLY PARSLEY (Chopped)
1/2 BUNCH LEEKS (White-bottom parts only, thinly sliced)
1/4 CUP PIMENTOS (Diced)
1/8 LB BUTTER (Melted)
1/2 TSP GRANULATED GARLIC
1/4 TSP LOUISIANA HOT SAUCE
1/2 LB ANDOUILLE (Cut into 1/8 inch slices then quartered)
1/2 LB 26 - 30 COUNT SHRIMP (Boiled, peeled and de-veined)
1 DOZEN EGGS (Beaten)
In a large stainless steel bowl combine the first nine ingredients, mix thoroughly, but be gentle so as not to break up the pasta.
In a large (14 inch minimum), heavy non-stick or cast iron skillet and over low to medium heat pour the seasoned pasta into the skillet. Spread the pasta out evenly over the entire pan. Gently blend in the andouille and shrimp, next, slowly add the egg batter. Evenly distribute the batter throughout the pan, including the sides.
Allow the eggs, shrimp and pasta to simmer for 3 - 5 minutes. Do not stir or move the filling once the eggs have been added. Lift the pan to a 15 degree angle and place the edge of the pan directly over the heat. This will allow the edges and sides of the frittata to cook and brown. Turn the pan 90 degrees, tilt the pan again and cook as before. Continue to do this to ensure even cooking throughout the entire bottom and sides of the frittata. Lift the edges of the frittata to check for color and doneness, the top should be somewhat cooked through and just a little runny.
Place a circular platter (at least 16 inches in diameter) on top of the skillet, hold the bottom of the platter in place and quickly turn over together. (As you would do a pineapple upside-down cake or shrimp mold.) Then replace the frittata to the skillet to finish cooking the original top side. Move the pan around the heat to insure even cooking. When done, the eggs and shrimp should be completely cooked through and the pasta golden brown.
Chef's Cooking Station
Add or substitute crabmeat, crawfish or poached oysters for the shrimp. Precook these in advance, chill and place in separate display bowls.
Cook smaller frittatas, use two (2) non-stick 8 inch skillets, also select a portable two burner propane or gas burning stove top. Place all of the ingredients in separate display bowls, arrange the ingredients so that they are in a logical order of use.
Over medium heat place about 1 cup of coated pasta in the skillet and distribute evenly over the pan. Allow the guest to choose the filling ingredients, ladle in 4 ounces of beaten eggs. Cook the frittata until the bottom is golden brown, ensure that the edges are browned. Flip the frittata and cook until the egg batter is cooked throughout.
When done, place the frittata on a wooden cutting board, cut the frittata with a pizza wheel and serve. (This can make about 4 servings).
Serve the frittata in the circular serving tray that was used to assist in the turning. Precut the frittata in the traditional pie cut and serve it with a cake server. (Or cut in squares like a deli pizza.) Allow guest to add their own favorite sauces of Marinara, Hollandaise or even Creole. (See Recipes)
The right equipment is a must when preparing this dish. If your cast iron skillet is well seasoned, very smooth bottom with slopping sides, than this is the perfect tool to use. If, however, you have a silver stone/heavy metal alloy skillet that is unblemished use it. Note also that a cast iron skillet filled with ingredients can become very heavy and may be difficult for some people to turn over with a platter on top of it.
We also made some great friends when we did the dish for our Easter Picnic of 2008, check us out!
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Chef Emile L. Stieffel, Aurora Catering, Inc. email address: ChefEmile@CustomCatering.net
Copyright © 1995 Aurora Catering, Inc. All rights reserved.
Revised: May 27, 2009.