Cooking can be as simple or as complex as you make it. A long rambling recipe can be such a joy to read and an inspiration with scrumptious results. A quick post-market lunch of hand-made tortellini and mushrooms picked lovingly by the same elderly man who sold them to you can be so ultimately satisfying in such a different way.
What we sometimes forget, however, is the tremendous impact of the people whom we are cooking for. It's almost like dating. First, you have the compatibility factors. How much salt, any dietary restrictions, and other personal preferences. But then comes something less tangible. Chemistry, I believe it is often called. It transcends the actual contents of the meal and touches a much more personal level. You can cook and eat with someone who likes the exact same things as you, but something just doesn't click. Maybe they are too critical, or not critical enough. Maybe they desire a formal presentation and you are more of a pan-to-plate kind of a cook. Whatever the case, finding good eating companions can sometimes be more of an accomplishment than tracking down an authentic truffle oil.
Today I had a moment, an artichoke frittata brunch moment to be precise, in which to pause and be grateful for new friends who are very enthusiastic eaters. And this is something to appreciate.
(Although, seeing as it is mother's day, I wish I lived close enough to share brunch with you, mum!)
Continue to Recipe...
Recipe: Artichoke Frittata
1 whole artichoke, trimmed, prickly bits removed, and sliced into wedges (or 1/2 cup from a jar)
juice of 1/4 lemon
2 Tb milk
1/2 tsp salt
a smattering of freshly ground white pepper
2 Tb olive oil
1/2 cup grated Pecorino or Parmesan
1) If you are using a fresh artichoke, start that right away because it needs to pre-cook. If you don't know how to trim and slice it, just watch a few online videos, it's not so hard. Basically, you want the stiff outer leaves removed as well as the inner-thistle bits. Once you have it in thin wedges, toss in a small pot and pour just enough water to come up half-way. Add lemon juice. Cook on low heat for 10-15 mins until softened.
2) Whisk eggs, milk, salt and pepper. Stir in artichokes (strain out any cooking liquid that remained). Heat a cast-iron pan and drizzle in the olive oil. Careful not to let it get too smoking-hot, and pour in the egg mix just before it gets to that point.
3) Pre-heat broiler. Cook eggs on stove top until edges are nice and firm. Stick in the preheated oven for another 2 minutes to cook the top part.
4) Top with freshly grated Pecorino (or Parmesan if you are in a pinch.) With whole-wheat toast and nice black tea - brunch perfection.