Sunday, October 16, 2011

Roasting Tomatoes

I don’t know why, but I have been a big fan of quiche ever since I had my first bite back in the early eighties. Maybe it is because the most famous quiche “Quiche Lorraine” and I share the same name and we have a love affair with bacon, or it might be that there is nothing better than an egg custard in a savory crust with lots of fun fillings that makes brunch so very satisfying. I really don’t know, but quiche has never gone out of fashion with me. Sadly, that crust I love so much doesn’t love me back. I am like a lot of people in that eating wheat flour does not agree with me, and well to be honest, as an over fifty woman carbs are not my friend either. I have solved that problem by making frittatas instead of quiche because I can get all that quiche goodness but in a more low-carb friendly form.  I won't say that I don't miss the crust because I do, but for me this works.

This frittata started from the realization that I have never roasted tomatoes. I read about them all the time and they sound great. The roasting concentrates the sweetness of the tomatoes and at the same time reduces their water content without going so far as to completely dry them out. This seemed like just the ticket when making a frittata (or a quiche) because extra water in an egg dish can be a problem and by roasting the tomatoes you can have all that tomato goodness without the frittata bleeding out from extra liquid.

The tomatoes turned out perfect for this dish, and well, it also has bacon.

Pancetta, Leek and Roasted Tomato Frittata

8 Servings

• 10 ounces grape tomatoes
• 1 tablespoon olive oil
• 4 ounces pancetta diced
• 3 small leeks thinly sliced
• 8 ounces shredded cheddar cheese
• 6 ounces shredded Italian cheese blend
• 10 basil leaves roughly chopped
• 2/3 cups heavy cream
• 1 cup whole milk
• 6 eggs
• Salt and pepper to taste


1. Preheat oven to 350°F.  Spray a 9 X 13 inch pan with cooking spray.

2. Cut grape tomatoes in half and place in a single layer on a foil wrapped rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Place baking sheet in the oven and roast tomatoes for 30 minutes, or until tomatoes are shriveled and mostly dry but not burnt. Remove from the oven and let cool to room temperature.

3. While the tomatoes roast cook the pancetta in a medium skillet over medium high heat until crisp. Remove to a paper towel lined plate.

4. Add the leeks to the skillet with the fat from the pancetta (you may need to add a little oil if the pan is dry) and sauté until leeks are tender but not brown, about 5 minutes. Remove to a bowl and let cool to room temperature.

5. In a large bowl mix together the cheeses and the basil.

6. Layer the leeks, tomatoes and pancetta in the 9 X 13 inch pan. Top with cheese mixture.

7. In a separate bowl, mix together cream, milk, eggs and salt and pepper. Pour over cheese in pan. Take a fork and run it through all the layers to the bottom of the pan to ensure that the eggs and cream are distributed evenly.

8. Bake in oven for 20 minutes. Reduce heat to 325°F and continue baking until eggs are set, about another 20 minutes. Test for doneness by using a toothpick inserted in the center. It should come out clean.

Printable Recipe


June said...

I love that you used grape tomatoes as they have so much flavor. Love frittata's and I'll bet with all the flavor in this one, you hardly miss the crust at all. Great post Lorraine!

Bayou Service For Him said...

I love quiche and frittatas sooooo much and rarely get to partake because my sweet William ate too many eggs as a wee one in Colombia that he just can't stomach them too often any more.... but I sneak them in every few months or so! This version looks lovely!

Mary L. said...

What a perfect Frittata Lorraine! Sounds light and scrumptious with the grape tomatoes, basil AND of course, the bacon! HUGS, Mary L.

Lea M. Callais said...

Lorraine - I posted under a different blog that I write for my husband and his Deacon Class - oops - That is the Bayou Service For Him thing - it is me Lea... sorry about that...

Lorraine said...

June, I love grape tomatoes! You are right they have so much flavor, and roasted they were something else.

Lorraine said...

Hi Lea,
I recognized you from your sweet William reference and the fact that you are the only Bayou babe I know. The identity did through me off for a second though. Sorry about the tomatoes.

Lorraine said...

Mary, Roasting the tomatoes made this version special. The basic egg, cream and cheese ratio can work with any combo, but I really can't go there without the bacon.