We spent this morning at a birthday brunch for our friend Matt. I’ve dubbed his wife “the hostess with the mostess plus,” because she’s simply the best hostess around. She welcoms friends and strangers alike into their home, and makes everyone feel like family. She and Matt even open their home to the community, year after year. But at the heart of the matter, “the hostess with the mostess plus” knows how to throw a party. When she received her doctorate, she threw a soiree that involved a live jazz ensemble, a chocolate fountain, and crepes to order, made by her late father, whom we all miss very much.
I was asked to bring an egg dish, which usually means a frittata. But when you go to brunch at the home of the hostess with the mostess plus, you best bring something real nice. So I went all fancy on you: I tucked my frittata recipe into mini-muffin cups. Whoa! Stop the presses.
I threw these together this morning, after the gym and market and before brunch. They’re quick and easy to make. I blended a batch of radish pesto to use in these mini-frittatas, because the radishes I bought at the market today had crisp, beautiful leaves just begging to be used (and because radish greens really need to be put to use within a few days of being picked, or they go limp). If you have basil, or even store-bought pesto, it’ll work great here.
Also – and I can’t believe it’s come to this – but these make great baby food. Naturally, I made them for the grown-ups. But many of our friends have toddlers, and they ate them like candy. So go forth. Make these frittata bites. Wow your guests, please your kids. Be the hosts with the most.
Pesto Frittata Bites
Makes about 50 mini-frittatas
12 large eggs
1/8 cup heavy cream or whole milk
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt (more if pesto is not salty or if not using feta cheese), or to taste
several grinds black pepper
2/3 cup pesto (I used radish, but any kind will work: basil, arugula, broccoli, spinach, you name it)
3 oz. crumbled feta, goat cheese, or grated parmesan
Baking spray or lots of olive oil or butter, for greasing pan
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Grease 2 24-cup mini-muffin tins very, very thoroughly. (Otherwise the frittatas will stick; I learned this the hard way.) If you have flour spray, use that. Otherwise, just be very thorough in your greasing. If you don’t have 2 muffin tins (I don’t), you’ll just make the frittatas in batches.
In a large mixing bowl (if you have one with a spout, use it here), whisk eggs vigorously until the whites and yolks are fully incorporated. Add milk, and whisk to combine. Add flour, salt, and pepper, break up any lumps, and whisk to combine. Add pesto, and whisk until pesto is mostly incorporated into the egg mixture. Fold cheese into egg mixture.
If you used a mixing bowl with a spout, fill the mini-muffin cups about 5/6 of the way full. Bake for 10-15 minutes (mine took 13), until frittatas have puffed up and tops are no longer moist. Let frittatas cool in their cups for 5-7 minutes – sadly, they will deflate – then ease them out by running a spoon or spatula around the edge of each, then under the bottom.
Serve the frittatas immediately, or at room temperature, the way the Italians do.
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What a great appertizer. Definitely one to try!
I am going to a Sunday brunch being hosted by a friend who is always trying to lower her cholesterol. Would it be ok to substitute in a lower-fat milk? How about a lower-fat cheese? This would make me a hero, so thanks in advance!
Hey MaryT, sorry I’m late here, but I think you could substitute both, since the eggs are what give the frittatas structure, not really the dairy. Good luck!
I can’t resist anything with eggs and cheese! These look like such tasty bites. 🙂
Also, I have an award for you at http://www.bluekaleroad.com/2011/10/chocolate-pumpkin-cake-and-awards.html
I thought 50 of these would too many in my house, so I only made a half recipe. I thought wrong. I made them an hour ago and they’ve ALL disappeared. They’re so fast, easy, and absolutely delish. Thanks so much for the recipe, its genius!