Tomato and Balsamic Frittata

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I just ate half a bag of cheese crunchies. Which emptied the contents completely, because I did the same thing last night this morning. This is why, people. This is why I’m not allowed to be alone with tasty treats. They call to me. I actually hear little powdered-dairy voices echoing in my head saying things like “You know you want it” and “Everything tastes as good as skinny feels” and “Just cave already! Eat your feelings! Nom!” And yes– they actually do get angrier the longer I hold out, until I cave under the pressure and eat THE WHOLE DANG BAG.

But moving on from crazy town and into actual, adult conversation….

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I had to do something healthy for myself after the cheese debacle (I did donate a bag of brownies to a neighbor and trashed the rest of the crunchy population residing in my cabinets), so dove into my vegetable drawer and came up with something that didn’t make me feel like a teenage headcase mourning over the loss of a bag of potato chips. Pathetic!

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Tomato and Chard Frittata

2 cups cherry tomatoes, washed
1 shallot, diced fine
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 c balsamic vinegar
1 t salt
pepper
1 T olive oil
2 c roughly chopped chard
4 eggs, beaten with 1 T milk
1/3 c shredded or chunked Parmesan Gouda or Cotija or goat cheese
1/4 c fresh basil, sliced thin

In a large bowl, combine the shallot, garlic, vinegar, salt, and pepper and mix well. Cut the tomatoes in half and add to the bowl. You can use larger tomatoes, but you will need to seed them or else there will be too much liquid in the pan. Toss the mixture and set aside to marinate for up to 1 hour. In a large pan heat the oil over medium-high and add the tomato mixture. Cook for a few minutes and then add the chard, stirring to cover everything with the vinegar. Cook this down for a few minutes, or until the liquid is reduced to a syrup-like consistency. Do not over cook– no longer than 5-7 minutes. Add the beaten eggs and turn heat down to medium-low. Cook for 5 minutes, or until the eggs are mostly set. Sprinkle the cheese over the top and cover for another 5 minutes, or until cooked through. Remove from heat, sprinkle with the basil, and serve immediately. Great with garlic toast!

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Rosemary and Goat Cheese Scones

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It’s never easy to find recipes that work well for large groups, are easy to throw together, and make everyone do the happy nom noms dance. There’s always a person who doesn’t like eggplant, some weirdo fruitarian, or a living-in-denial, “I don’t eat carbs” lame-o.

In my quest to find meal ideas for our larger-than-life, week-long family fiesta for the 4th, I stumbled across some savory scones that did the tricksy. Served with salad, they were the perfect lunch that didn’t require too much fuss and pleased the masses. I set out to create one that was more my fancy and settled on some goat cheese, rosemary, gruyere, and apricot magic. Deeeelightful.

After a couple of tries, I think I found a happy balance between the flavors. The flour-butter-milk base can be used with your own favorite combination of flavors, so I encourage the adventurers out there to swap out my choices and go crazy with some pancetta, figs, blue cheese, etc etc.

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Rosemary and Goat Cheese Scones

1/2 c yellow onion, diced fine
1 t olive oil
1 t rosemary, chopped
3/4 apricots, chopped fine (I used dried apricots and rehydrated them in warm water for about an hour)
3/4 c goat cheese, crumbled
3/4 c gruyere, shredded
3 c flour
2 t baking powder
1 t salt
6 T butter, softened and cut into 1/2″ chunks
2 T shortening
1 c milk, plus 1-2 T

Heat your oven to 400 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In a medium pan over medium heat, add the olive oil. When hot, add the onion and saute over low until brown, 5-10 minutes. Add a bit of water if the pan gets dry. Cool slightly. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine flour, powder, and salt. With a pastry blender, two knives, or a fork, mix in the butter and shortening so that your mixture is coarse and about the size of peas. I find a fork easier than knives, since you have more control and can press the chunks of butter against the side of the bowl. When you have a consistent mixture, slowly add the milk while stirring with a spatula. If needed, add additional milk about 1 T at a time. The mixture should be fairly dry– don’t add too much milk. Add the onion, rosemary, apricots, and cheeses. Knead on a floured surface for a couple of minutes and then form into a disc on your baking sheet. Flatten into a circle that is about 1 1/2″ thick and bake for 30 minutes, or until brown. Let cool and serve.

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