Preparation time: 5 minutes
Cooking time: 5 minutes
Throughout Italy, and especially in southern regions like Calabria, homemakers create frittatas as a means of using up leftovers. A frittata is usually described as an open-faced omelette where the fillings are cooked inside (as opposed to a French omelette, where fillings are rolled inside thin egg pancakes). It requires eggs and whatever other ingredients you choose, cooked together in a saute pan. In most regions, the "other" ingredients are vegetables, meat or seafood. In Calabria and other southern italian regions, cooked pasta, often leftovers, is frequently included with spicy sausage and red bell peppers. Here, there's always a frittata on holiday mornings.
- Char the outside skin of the bell peppers over an open flame or under the broiler until completely blackened. Place in a brown paper bag to cool.
- Once cool (at least 30 minutes later), remove the charred skin, rinse under cool water and pat dry. Remove core and seeds. Cut into small dice (approx. 1/4-in. squares).
- Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain and toss with 4 tbsp butter and 1 cup grated cheese. Allow to cool.
- Remove sausage from casing and place in saute pan over medium heat. Break up the sausage using a wooden spoon. Cook until brown. Remove from pan and drain.
- Break eggs into large mixing bowl and beat lightly. Add cooled pasta and mix to combine evenly.
- Melt remaining butter in a 10-in. saute pan over medium heat. Add half the egg/pasta mixture. Spread cooked sausage and red pepper over the pasta. Top with remaining egg/pasta mixture.
- Leave over medium heat and cook until bottom of frittata separates cleanly from pan. Using a large spatula, slide the frittata onto a large plate. Place the pan over the uncooked side of the frittata and flip. Return the pan to the heat and cook until the other side also separates cleanly from the pan. Slide cooked frittata onto serving platter and garnish.
Instead of flipping the frittata, you may finish it under the broiler. Once the bottom is set, garnish the top with tomato slices and the additional cheese. Place under the broiler until top sizzles and begins to turn brown. Slide onto plate and serve.
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