Spinach, bacon and goat’s cheese frittata

A frittata is simply a thick, chunky omelette made with some vegetables and usually a little cheese. Served warm, in wedges, it makes an excellent supper.

Left to go cold, then sliced into chunks, it's robust enough to pack into a lunchbox or picnic basket. 

In fact, it's ideal prepare-ahead food. Quite apart from this, frittata appeals to me because you can add almost anything you like to it: bacon or cooked sausage, flaked fish, any kind of cheese, peas or broad beans, asparagus, kale, spinach or broccoli, mushrooms, and so on. My only caveat is to avoid 'wet' ingredients such as tomatoes, which will stop the eggs setting properly.

Serves 4:

  • 1 tablespoon rapeseed or sunflower oil
  • 75g pancetta or bacon, cut into small cubes
  • 4 shallots, thinly sliced
  • 100g young leaf spinach
  • 8 medium eggs
  • 25g Parmesan, Cheddar or other hard cheese,
  • finely grated
  • A grating or two of nutmeg
  • 100g soft goat's cheese, crumbled into biggish chunks
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Spinach, bacon and goat's cheese frittata

Directions:

Heat the oil in a 25cm non-stick ovenproof frying pan over a medium heat.

Add the pancetta or bacon and sauté until golden, then remove with a slotted spoon; set aside. Add the shallots to the pan, lower the 
heat and cook gently for about 10 minutes, until soft but not coloured.

Add the spinach and turn until just wilted, then take off the heat.

Lightly beat the eggs in a bowl, then stir in the pancetta or bacon, spinach and shallots, grated cheese, nutmeg and seasoning.

Put the frying pan back over a low heat, pour in the egg mixture and cook gently, without stirring, letting the eggs set slowly from the base up.

After about 5 minutes, give the pan a little shake: the bottom half of the frittata should be set, with a layer of wet egg still on top.

Dot the goat's cheese over the top, then place in an oven preheated to 180°c/Gas Mark 4 for 5—10 minutes until just set, or put the pan
under a medium-hot grill, ideally not too close to the heat, for about 5 minutes.

Let cool slightly (or completely) before slicing and serving.

• Spinach, bacon and goat's cheese frittata is a recipe from Hugh's latest book, Every Day, which is available from the River Cottage online shop.