Frittatine alla Parmigiana-SRC Manu’s Menu

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It’s Secret Recipe Club reveal day.  I am very pleased to announce that I was assigned Manu’s Menu.  Here’s something you probably don’t know, I’ve been a Foodbuzz friend of Manuela’s blog for sometime.  You can imagine my delight when I saw who’s blog I was assigned.  Considering how many blogs I read and the zillions of bookmarked recipes I have, I rarely make a recipe from a fellow blogger. It’s difficult when you are so busy sharing your own recipes to take the time to make someone else’s recipes. But that’s the great thing about SRC, it gives you the opportunity to finally make a dish that you’ve wanted to try.  Besides, Manuela has impeccable taste, evidently we both have the same Villeroy & Boch  Switch 3 patterned dishes.

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Manuela is a naturalized Australian, but she grew up in Milan, Italy and she was raised by Sicilian parents.  Naturally her blog features a lot of Italian food.   Manuela has been posting regional Italian recipes which you can find by index.  For me, I loved that feature.  As an American I have a tendency to classify Italian food simply as “Italian” which is not incorrect, just too generic.  Just like here in America, different regions have different specialties or a different version of the same dish.  For example, no one would call fried chicken, grits and greens a Northern or Western dish and if you read my Clam Chowder post you’ll see regional differences for the same dish.

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Manuela did not specifically list the Frittatine allla Parmigiana to a specific region, rather she shares with us that it’s a traditional Italian dish, a recipe handed down from her Great Grandmother (Sicilian perhaps?).  It’s one of the oldest recipes she has.  Any recipe handed down from a grande nonna is certainly a recipe worth making.  Manuela mentioned that she is amazed at the distortion of Italian dishes, and that she posts the real thing.

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Bloggers inherently have to “lift their leg” and make their own mark on recipes and this one was no different.  I wanted to stay true to the recipe and not distort it but I had a basket full of garlic that I needed to use.  My basket was full of beautiful full heads of garlic, then it broke and garlic went every where.  Most of my perfect heads of garlic split and spread their cloves and skins all over my dining room/kitchen.  What a mess.  One of the best and fastest way to use up garlic is roasting it.  So that’s my mark…Roasted Garlic Frittatine alla Parmigiana.

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Whenever I cook, I keep my handy notebook by my side and make notes.  As I read Manuela’s grande nonna’s recipe, I realized it is like many recipes handed down.  Sometimes ingredients are listed without measurement and sometimes the measurements are a bit ambiguous, such as “1/2 glass milk”.   Since I was unsure of what size of glass it called for I assumed it was a standard drinking glass which is 12 ounces and a half glass is 6 ounce (3/4 cup).  I was spot on in this case.

Also, I could not find a 13.5 ounce can of tomato puree, only a 29 ounce can.  I doubled the sauce (which is a good thing as you’ll see later), knowing that extra sauce is always a good thing.  I mixed my frittatine batter in a food processor versus a blender, why?  Because I just bought a brand new food processor and this was the FIRST time using it!  It was a huge expense for me, this grander dame of food processors, but I’ve broken two cheaper versions in the last 3 years.  It was on sale and I’m hoping that it will last a loooong time.

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If you decide to use roasted garlic (which was sublimely delicious in the sauce), add the salt to the chopped up roasted garlic cloves and mash them together with the edge of a knife.  The garlic paste will melt into the sauce, adding flavor without anyone biting into a chunk of roasted garlic (not that it would bother me).

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The frittatine was a definite challenge for me.  I’ve never made crepes or any thing similar so I had no experience regarding the cooking technique.  I was also unsure of the size of pan and what heat setting to use.  My first one came out a bit broken.  I tried to flip it with a turner but it broke.  I determined that I did not have enough butter in my pan to make it nice and slippery.

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However, the thickness was perfect and I was able to piece it together and hide it under the sauce so no one would know.

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My next attempt, I added more butter and got my layer to slide around nicely, so nicely in fact that I decided to go all chef-y and flip it.  Yeah, not such a good idea (see below).  I use an electric stove top, and I discovered, as my pan really started to heat up, that medium high was too hot.  Note to self: Use medium heat and don’t get all chef-y.

My dogs were quite happy with the little disaster!

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I added butter to my pan and I made my third second layer, cooked over medium heat and used a turner to flip it.  Ahh perfection.  Only now I was nearly out of batter, I only got four (3 usable) frittatine layers.  I checked Manuela’s pictures and counted the layers, there 8 and I technically only got 4.  I went ahead and made another batch of batter and while it rested for 30 minutes I gave it some thought.

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I knew that my layers were the right thickness but I only got half, that meant the only reason I did not get enough from my batter would be that my pan was too large.  I was using a 10” non-stick pan, the size selected solely on the fact that it “looked right”.  Since I already started with the 10”, and my layering, I needed to continue but I wanted a lovely layered frittatine.  I decided to make thinner bigger layers.  In order to make sure I could get the maximum layers, I measured out the batter for each layer.  I used 1/4 cup for each one, they were thinner but I think if I used an 8” pan the thickness would have been perfect.  I also got exactly 8 layers.  I’m happy to say that I succeeded.

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My frittantine looks like a beautifully layered cake.  I’m glad I made extra sauce because  I ended up with 10 layers.  I over sauced the first few layers, even doing that, I still had sauce left over.

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Is this not one of the most beautiful things you’ve ever seen?  The flavors were incredible, very simple ingredients allowed each one to shine. The tomato flavor explodes in your mouth, followed by some tangy cheesiness and then you are left with a nice roasted garlic and onion flavor to enjoy until your next bite.  The frittatine would be a perfect Sunday brunch dish or for entertaining since it can be enjoyed at room temperature.

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Grazie Manuela per avermi fatto conoscere un’antica ricetta di famiglia, spero che ho fatto tua nonna grande orgoglio!

The recipe below has my instructions with the halved sauce ingredients (since I had excess), you can see the original here.

Recipe___________________________________________________

Frittatine alla Parmigiana

Frittatine batter

  • 4 eggs
  • 4 tablespoons flour
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter divided into 8 slices

Sauce

  • 1/4 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 can (13.5 ounces) tomato puree (no salt added)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 to 1/2 cups parmigiano reggiano, finely grated
  • 1/2 head roasted garlic (optional), peeled and chopped

Batter:  Place eggs, flour, milk and salt into a blender or food processor.  Blend until homogenous.  Let rest for 30 minutes.

Sauce:  Meanwhile, heat olive oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat.  Add onions and sauté until onions are tender, about 5 minutes.  Add tomato puree.  If using the roasted garlic, add salt to garlic and press against a hard surface like a cutting board to create a paste.  Add the salt/garlic paste to the puree.  It not using the garlic add only the salt to the puree.  Bring to a low boil then turn down and simmer for 20 minutes.  Set sauce aside and let cool.

Frittatine:  Heat an 8”  non-stick frying pan over medium heat.  Add 1/4 teaspoon of butter to pan.  When melted, tilt the pan to coat the entire bottom with butter.  Add 1/4 cup of the batter to the pan, swirl the pan to spread the batter evenly.  Cook until the edges become dry and the surface dries up, then flip. Repeat for each layer making sure to add a little butter in between each one.

To assemble:  On a large plate or platter, put a little sauce on the bottom, place one layer on top, add more sauce then sprinkle with parmigiano reggiano, repeat until all layers are used.  Top it off with a generous amount of parmigiano reggiano and garnish with parsley or fresh basil.

Source: Manu’s Menu

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29 Responses to Frittatine alla Parmigiana-SRC Manu’s Menu

  1. Manu November 21, 2011 at 5:31 am #

    PS: I hadn’t realised we had the same Villeroy & Bosch dishes! That’s amazing! I love that set! :-)

  2. Manu November 21, 2011 at 5:36 am #

    Ooops… not sure what happened to my previous comment… so I will re type it!
    I am so HAPPY you got my blog Rhonda! :-) And THANK you for choosing to make this specific recipe… it is very dear to me! You made it perfectly! It looks mouthwatering! I know it can be a bit tricky to make the first time… I actually still break the first layer quite often (maybe the pan is not hot enough?)! I only just realised that I should have been a bit more precise with the measures of the recipe… I will make it a point to measure all the ingredients the next time I make it, so that it can be easier for someone who makes it for the first time! :-)
    Ohhh it’s 11:30PM and now I am HUNGRY!!!!! SIGH!!! :-)

    • Giggles November 21, 2011 at 7:58 am #

      Thanks Manu, it makes me feel better that you sometimes break the first one also!

  3. Angie @ Bigbearswife November 21, 2011 at 8:22 am #

    I loved reading your post! Aren’t recipes handed down just so much better! I also love your basket of garlic! Sorry it broke :(

    But you did an amazing job on this one!

  4. sara November 21, 2011 at 3:51 pm #

    OMG, this looks so delicious! What a fantastic dish! :)

  5. Wendy (The Weekend Gourmet) November 21, 2011 at 5:51 pm #

    I’m so glad I can finally comment now that the gig is up and you know I had your blog this month! Your blog is really great…love the recipes and your fantastic photos! One of my favorite things about SRC is finding new blogs to follow. So glad I was paired with you this month!

    • Giggles November 22, 2011 at 1:39 pm #

      I’m so glad we were paired up also. It’s so hard not comment when you’re the “secret”.

  6. Jamie November 21, 2011 at 7:15 pm #

    Beautiful, beautiful post. And it looks like a challenging recipe but delicious

    • Giggles November 22, 2011 at 1:40 pm #

      Thanks, it was challenging for me, but now I feel like I could take on crepes.

  7. Eliot November 21, 2011 at 7:53 pm #

    Wow!!! I am impressed. Your frittatine looks amazing. And, your photos are fantastic. Again, I am impressed. Loved the pic of the eggs, garlic and cheese grater!

    • Giggles November 22, 2011 at 1:41 pm #

      The eggs, garlic and cheese was my favorite picture also. I don’t usually take any during the process because I get so excited for the end…usually the eating part.

  8. Kita November 21, 2011 at 8:08 pm #

    Wow…. I am coming over to your house next month for SRC. This looks incredible. And I wish my handy dandy notebook was filled with writing that legible. The extra sauce is a must too.
    Seriously though…. this just looks so delicious.

    • Giggles November 22, 2011 at 1:38 pm #

      Kita, come over any time ;) There are times when I can’t read my own writing, especially after a few glasses of wine!

  9. Tandy November 23, 2011 at 4:13 am #

    buonissimo! the post and the recipe. I also have a Villeroy and Boch dinner service :)

  10. Chris November 23, 2011 at 10:22 am #

    This looks like a stunning dish! Just beautiful. I need to attempt this; I hope I can make the crepes!

  11. Kitchen Butterfly November 23, 2011 at 2:14 pm #

    I love layered anything and this is no exception Rhonda, it looks wonderful – glad you could put your garlic to great use.

  12. marla November 23, 2011 at 11:11 pm #

    I have never had anything like this…well done! You chose a great recipe for the Secret Recipe club. Here is what I cooked up from group C: http://su.pr/1HICCz :)

  13. Rebecca November 24, 2011 at 3:06 pm #

    My Sicilian roommate used to make these! But she added mint to the frittatine batter and made them smaller, pancake sized with the sauce just spooned over. I can’t wait to try this variation – it looks so cool as a layer cake. (By the way, frittatine are plural – little frittatas.) Thanks so much!

    • Giggles November 25, 2011 at 10:37 am #

      So I made a bunch of little frittatas, I learn something new every day! Next time I make them I’ll have to try the mint.

  14. Anne@frommysweetheart November 25, 2011 at 10:31 am #

    First of all…kudos to you for giving such a lovely write up of Manuela’s blog! That’s what this reveal day is all about! This is my first month with the SRC and I joined for the reason you described. I finally get to try something from another blog! I have so many things bookmarked with good intentions. You did a wonderful job with this recipe. It looks unique and delicious! And I really love your own blog, too. Happy to have found it through SRC and your pictures are just gorgeous! : )

    • Giggles November 25, 2011 at 10:34 am #

      Anne, thank you for the nice comment. So glad to have you as part of SRC!

  15. Teri@ The Freshman Cook November 25, 2011 at 10:34 pm #

    This looks so good. I love making sauces, and I can’t wait to try this entire recipe. Beautiful pictures!

  16. Gitte November 26, 2011 at 5:08 pm #

    Love Crepes, this looks really interesting. Great post.

  17. Karen November 27, 2011 at 2:43 pm #

    Wow, this looks SO good! I finally joined SRC… Dec is my first month.

    • Giggles November 28, 2011 at 6:58 pm #

      Karen, I’m so glad you are joining SRC, you’ll love it!

  18. Jennifer @ Peanut Butter and Peppers December 4, 2011 at 8:10 am #

    Wow,that looks amazing! I thought it was going to be unhealthy but it’s not! I need to try this! Yum!!

    • Giggles December 4, 2011 at 8:31 am #

      Surprisingly it is healthy, unless you eat too much ;)

  19. Patti December 4, 2011 at 8:40 am #

    Whoa! I only wish this would have been my assignment! This is something I would really enjoy!

    • Giggles December 5, 2011 at 11:57 am #

      I really did enjoy this, it was a challenge for me. I have a lazy zone for sure, SRC motivates me to step out of my zone.

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