No one really wants to waste food, especially when you’re trying eat affordably. However, there are times when you just can’t face another meal of leftovers. I often avoid food burnout by sticking leftovers into the freezer the day the food is made. That way I can wait a week or two before I serve it again. I know there are people all over the world who eat the same thing every single meal, but my family tends to be happiest about a food if it’s been awhile since we’ve last had it.
Last night we had spaghetti in the fridge that needed to be eaten. I didn’t want it to go to waste, but frankly, I was less than enthused. This frittata turned leftover spaghetti into something that looked and tasted decided UN-leftover-ish.
Preparation time: 40 minutes
4 tablespoons butter
1 medium white or yellow onion, sliced into long slivers
2-3 cups of leftover spaghetti with meat sauce
2 cloves garlic, minced
6 eggs, beaten
1 tablespoon fresh basil
2 teaspoons salt
freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 cup grated mozzarella or Monterey Jack cheese
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Slice onion and peel garlic. Put butter and slivered onions into a large skillet on medium high heat. A cast iron skillet is best, because then you’ll be able to bake it right in the skillet. Cook, stirring every 2 or 3 minutes, until onions are soft and are getting some nice browned bits. If onions start to blacken before they are soft, turn the heat down a little.
While the onions are cooking, in a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, minced garlic, salt and fresh basil (or substitute 2 teaspoons dried basil.) Zap leftover spaghetti in the microwave until hot. This step is not essential but it will cut 5 or 10 minutes off the baking time. You can use any leftover spaghetti. Mine had ground beef and traditional tomato sauce.
When the onions have some nice browned bits, remove skillet from heat. At this point, you can transfer the onions to an oven safe 8 inch casserole dish (round if you want pie-shaped servings). Or if you are using a cast iron skillet, just leave the onions right there in the skillet.
Spread the onions out evenly. Add the warmed spaghetti right on top of the onion mixture, again spreading it out evenly. Pour egg mixture evenly over all. Sprinkle cheese on top. Last of all, add a generous amount of freshly ground black pepper. Bake at 400 degrees for 20-30 minutes, until egg in the center is set and cheese is nicely browned.
Garnish with additional fresh basil, if desired. And there you have it– leftovers, but not! My family ate this enthusiastically. Maybe yours would too.