The 2013 summer solstice doesn’t begin until June 21. And?? Well, that means there is are still a few more weeks to enjoy spring, that is, until the hot and humid weather takes over, at least here in D.C. Too hot for most of us, including most of these beautiful vegetables that thrive during more temperate weather and bid adieu when the mercury starts to rise. So, take advantage of them while you can. Better still, do so with this delicious (and easy to prepare) fresh pea and mint frittata.
Once again, it’s all about simplicity, sourcing the freshest ingredients you can find, and savoring their inherent flavor. This is truly a farmers’ market-inspired dish, a celebration of spring — from the duck (or chicken) eggs, to the mint and chive blossoms, to the salty feta and sweet green peas.
Love fresh spring peas. Like many, I patiently await their arrival all year long. Fresh peas straight from the pod are sweet and tender, but still retain a little texture and crunch. Mint is an ideal accompaniment to peas. Like two peas in a pod — that is, mint and peas — they go hand in hand.
Also added a pinch of saffron, which imparts a nice floral note, and finished with a sprinkling of feta and chive blossoms. As for chive blossoms, am inclined to put on top of just about everything this time of year, both for aesthetics (love the pop of color from those delicate purple flowers) and their subtle flavor. The eggs are whisked with Greek yogurt, which makes them light and fluffy. I kept a few yolks intact so you get a little contrast in texture between the scrambled and whole yolks. You start the frittata in a pan on the stove top until the eggs are just set around the edges, and then finish the dish briefly under the broil until the top is lightly golden.
Makes for a great breakfast or brunch, but tonight I’ll be enjoying this for dinner…
Duck eggs have a slightly larger yolk than chicken eggs (so if using chicken eggs, you’ll want to use a couple extra). What a magnificent shade of orange…
A Spring Frittata: Fresh Spring Peas, Mint, and Yogurt
1/2 pound fresh shelled green peas
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup Greek yogurt plus extra for topping
6 duck eggs or 8 chicken eggs
1/2 cup chopped mint, loosely packed
pinch or two of saffron threads, crushed
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
feta cheese, crumbled
Quickly blanch the fresh peas in a pot of boiling salted water, just a minute or two, and then immediately transfer to an ice water bath to stop the cooking. Drain well.
Preheat the broiler. In a medium (~10-inch), ovenproof, nonstick skillet, melt the butter. Add the peas and cook over moderate heat until warm, about a minute.
In a large bowl, gently whisk 1/2 cup of yogurt with 4 duck (or 6 chicken) eggs (reserving 2), mint, saffron, salt and pepper until smooth. Add the last 2 eggs, gently whisk the whites into the mixture, being careful to keep the yolks intact. Pour the eggs over the peas and cook over moderately high heat until just set on the bottom and around the edges, about 4 minutes. Transfer the skillet to the oven and broil 6 inches from the heat for about 2 minutes, until the top of the tortilla is set and lightly golden in spots. Slide the tortilla onto a plate, cut into wedges and top with yogurt, chive/chive blossoms, and feta.