Working People Dream of Local Food

Tulips on the Fenceline
Tulips on the Fence Line

LAKE MACBRIDE— Preoccupation with mixed greens can be a good thing when working in a warehouse. The repetitive tasks, and long periods without human engagement create an open mind that will fill with worry if one lets it. Yesterday I got two bags of mixed greens from the CSA, and spent the second shift thinking about making a frittata made from local ingredients.

A couple of notes:

There is an abundance of Iowa artisan cheese. The trouble is the expense is more than a working person can afford on a daily basis. After trying many kinds of cheese, we settled on Cabot Extra Sharp Cheddar (yellow and white) which retails at less than $4.50 per pound. Not really local, but affordable, made with vegetable rennet and what one expects a sharp cheddar cheese to taste like.

Vidalia onions are in season, and were addressed here.

Mixed Greens Frittata

Frittata Ingredients
Frittata Ingredients

Making frittata is somewhat flexible. Part of my workingman’s dream of local food included the ingredients in our pantry: the mixed greens mentioned, half a Vidalia onion, sharp cheddar cheese, a Jalapeno pepper from last year’s garden and Farmer Kate’s bell pepper – both from the freezer, chopped stems of local Bok Choy, spring garlic and chives picked this morning in my garden, and four eggs – locally, but mass produced. Enough extra virgin olive oil to coat the frying pan.

One can see from the photo how the vegetables were prepared. The stems of the greens were cut into small bits and reserved. The remaining mixed greens were roughly chopped. Here is how:

Heat a non-stick frying pan on high heat. Coat the bottom with extra virgin olive oil and when the oil heats, add diced onions. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Cook the onions for a couple of minutes and add in the following order: bell and Jalapeno peppers, Bok Choy stems, chopped mixed greens stems, and spring garlic. Cook until the onions are translucent. Add the chopped greens and stir constantly until the leaves wilt. Don’t overly cook the greens.

Finished Frittata
Finished Frittata

Whisk four whole eggs in a bowl, and pour over the cooked vegetables to cover. Turn the heat to medium low and cover the frying pan with a lid. Cook about six minutes, or until the eggs are cooked through. Sprinkle a half cup of grated cheddar cheese on top, turn off the heat and cover with the lid. When the cheese is melted, transfer to a serving plate and garnish with fresh chives.

Serve with a slice of your favorite bread, a piece of fruit, and a cup of coffee for a working person’s breakfast.