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Hacks Recipes

Secrets for Cooking Frittata And Mistakes To Avoid

Photo: So Delicious

Make a frittata for brunch, they said. It will be easy, they said. But it’s still not working out? Sometimes we miss some details when reading recipes, instructions and how to articles. It doesn’t have to be a disaster. Here are some secrets for cooking frittata and a few mistakes to avoid.

Frittatas are sometimes the best, but I know from experience that sometimes they can be the worst and just not work out. They can have exquisite flavor and texture, on they can be a rubbery, chewy, flavorless mess. I am here to help you avoid all of that. And enable the frittata to become one of your go-to meals: cheap, easy to make, and good for all seasons and times of the day.

What’s even better is that cooking frittata means you can use whatever leftover veggies and meats you have in your kitchen.

For starters, try to make this onion and walnut frittata, with lots of garlic and flavor!

7 tips and tricks for cooking frittata to perfection

1. Always use full-fat dairy

You don’t have to use milk or other dairy products in a frittata, but can I urge you to try it (Of course, only if you’re not lactose intolerant – I am not a monster)? You can use whole milk, yogurt, creme fraiche or even sour cream, and it enriches your experience fully.

Just make sure that the product you use is not too low-fat because that would be like adding water. And nobody wins when we do that!

2. Cook the fillings before adding the eggs

Frittata is an amazing delivery system for your dinner leftovers, like cooked veggies, roasted potatoes, or pieces of sausage.

But if you use raw ingredients, you have to cook them first, before adding the eggs on top. Foods rich in liquid like tomatoes or mushrooms could water down your eggs if you don’t precook them and let them release their moisture before assembling the frittata.

The cooking time for the eggs is so fast, that items like onions or potatoes might end up almost raw in the frittata. Saute everything first!

Secrets for Cooking Frittata and Mistakes to Avoid
You can use a muffin pan to create lovely frittata muffins.

3. Be mindful of proportions

Even if you’re creatively improving upon a recipe, be mindful of the proportions between the eggs, the fillings, and the dairy.

Too much dairy could make your eggs runny. Too many fillings won’t have enough egg to stick them together.

4. Don’t overwork the eggs

When you whisk your eggs, keep it light and keep it short. Just enough to blend the egg whites and the yolks evenly. If you overdo it, you might end up with a collapsed egg layer when the frittata comes out of the oven and cools a little.

5. Don’t overbake

A great frittata has a consistency similar to custard. It should be barely set, not completely solid. How do you watch out for that? Well, if the crust is golden, that means your dish is already overcooked. Check the frittata in the oven five minutes before the recipe says it’s done. And if you really want that crust on top, use cheese to create the crispy effect. It cooks much faster than the eggs.

Don’t throw away old bread, add it to a frittata and witness the magic!

6. Season wisely

Add salt and pepper to your eggs before they hit the pan or the skillet. If you just sprinkle some salt over the pan, when all the ingredients are there, it will mostly make the top part incredibly salty and the interior under-seasoned and bland, and that’s not the right way of cooking frittata. You should also season your fillings whenever you cook them, so they get the most flavor improvement possible.

7. Choose your cheese mindfully

Choose the cheese to use with a purpose in mind. If you want something that melts and that you can feel in every delicious bite of your frittata, then shred your cheese and stir it in the eggs before adding to the pan. A harder cheese like parmesan doesn’t melt that well and is better added to the top of the frittata, for a salty, crunchy layer. Cheddar and gruyere cheese will make the texture of the frittata creamier.

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 Article by Ruxandra Grecu from So Delicious. View the original article here.
Categories
Hacks Recipes

Perfect Shakshuka: What You Need To Pay Attention To

Photo: So Delicious

The Middle Eastern-born shakshuka is a wonderful, hearty, healthy and tasty dish. But how do you make sure it’s all that it can be? There are ways to make the perfect shakshuka. Here are a guide and some ideas!

Let’s get you started on the road to loving this North African-born dish. But the perfect shakshuka? That is the dream, after all. Customizing the dish to suit your wildest dreams. And of course, we’ve got some ideas on that. There are a few basic rules you should follow and everything will turn out OK. Let’s do this!

Where do you start with the perfect shakshuka?

The dish is quite flexible and easy to fall in love with. Because the simplest rule or definition is that shakshuka is a dish with eggs simmered in a base of stewed tomatoes and peppers. From there, the possibilities are endless and the sky’s the limit. Don’t be afraid to reach for the stars.

Shakshuka is a one-pan dish which doesn’t leave much for cleanup. Especially if you dunk some nice whole-wheat bread into the yolk and sauce mixture. There are two essential components to the dish: the rich tasting eggs cooked to perfection and the sauce you cook them in, which can lean on the spicy or acidic side.

Start off with this quick and easy shakshuka, and then experiment with ingredients!

How do you customize?

1.Tomatoes

The diversity of tomato use in perfect shakshuka is almost endless. You can use them canned, or fresh, diced or pureed. You can leave them out entirely if you plan on going for something spicier, with a different texture. Of course, you will also need quality tomatoes if you use them, so choose wisely. You can peel them or keep the skin on. You can mix and match different types of tomatoes. You can dilute with water. The choice is yours and you know best how you like those yummy things.

Purists will tell you that canned tomatoes are forbidden, but we think that you should do what works best for you (and what is a bit time-saving, too). The good news is that overripe tomatoes, that are too mushy for salad, will work splendidly in a shakshuka.

2.The seasoning

Cumin is one of the favored spices when it comes to shakshuka. Some use cumin seeds, other go for ground cumin. Paprika is also a favorite, be it smoked or sweet. You can pick from coriander, Aleppo pepper, Cayenne pepper, or curry powder, too. Garlic is of capital importance in my book, and you can choose to use freshly minced cloves or garlic powder. Add some jalapeno slices if you’re one of those people who don’t mind their mouth being on fire (I am, join my club!).

Perfect Shakshuka: What You Need to Pay Attention ToYou can make green shakshuka by using leeks, chard, or whatever leafy greens you prefer.

3. The cooking style

Shakshuka might be a one-skillet dish, but you can do way more with it than you think.  You can cook it on the stove top, or in the oven, or you could find the middle path on that and finish it off in the oven after you’ve cooked it on the stove-top.

If you want a special presentation, you can make it as a casserole. And if you have fancy guests, how about some shakshuka ramekins, each one with a nicely baked egg on top?

4. The toppings

From a very early age, I’ve had trouble separating the concepts of “eggs” and “bacon”, so adding some bacon bits as toppings on the shakshuka, get them nice and crispy, came naturally to me. If you’re making a casserole, you can cover the dish with bacon slices. And you’ve chosen ramekins, by all means, use bacon slices as a base for the whole thing.

And of course, there is the cheesy matter of using some cheese on top. Like ground parmesan or shredded mozzarella, or – why not? – some great golden Cheddar. Just go with your whims. Let yourself be free when cooking.

If you’re dairy-free or vegetarian, chop up some nice fresh herbs like chives, parsley, or coriander and use them to finish the dish, for some vibrant green on your table. Olives will do well, too.

Once you’ve got the basics down, you can play with toppings. Try this salami shakshuka asap!

5. The vegetables

Most anything will work here. You can use peppers and onion and soften them up, but by all means experiment with some potatoes, beans, some eggplant or zucchini, even artichoke hearts.

6. The eggs

You should always cook them slowly, that is the rule. But you can also try a variation on how you cook them. You can use a fork to blend the egg whites in the sauce, but be careful not to break the delicate yolks. Or you can scramble those, too, if you’re so inclined. You can also try cooking the dish with or without the lid, to see how the eggs set on both versions.

The basic rules of perfect shakshuka

1. Saute the vegetables

You will want the veggies to be silky and soft before adding the sauce. Use butter or olive oil as the fat. And once they’re softened, spice them with whatever you chose as flavorings – that way, their flavor is absorbed by the fat which transfers it to the whole dish.

2. Simmer the sauce

You can use tomatoes, or you can actually make a white sauce with heavy cream or coconut milk. You don’t have to go for tomato sauce if you’re not a fan. The sauce should be thick enough to support the eggs.

Perfect Shakshuka: What You Need to Pay Attention To
The tomato sauce should be thick enough to support the eggs.

3. Add sensitive greens

I know what you’re thinking: eggs go great with spinach, for instance. So if you want to add those healthy leafy greens, add them after the sauce, so that they don’t wilt and lose all their flavor.

4. Add the eggs

Cook the eggs on top of the sauce and veggies until the egg whites are set. If you want to steam the yolks, cover them up with a lid. If you want a bit of crunch, cook them out in the open.

5. Garnish

This is where you top everything off with the items of your dreams! Enjoy your customized shakshuka to the fullest!

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 Article by Ruxandra Grecu from So Delicious. View the original article here.