Mary Ann's Blog

End of Spring Cleaning

Detective Now that spring is drawing to a close, it's time to finally get around to that spring cleaning.

Of course, the first place I like to start any cleaning project is in the pantry. Things can get hairy in there, but this is a tale that ends deliciously.

I become like a Sherlock Holmes, inspecting cans for expiration dates. Anything outdated gets tossed in the trash.

Spices are notorious for dying out too soon. Anything that is more than six months old has lost its zip (the oils have dried up) so they need to be tossed too.

Those open bags or boxes of cereal, rice, oatmeal, black beans and pasta all get transferred to glass jars or airtight plastic containers. I am not interested in an army of ants invading my kitchen, so I made sure to wash off the sticky jars of honey and maple syrup. Cooking and salad oils can go rancid in a year. I smelled them, and anything that gave off a tinny odor, they got thrown out as well.

After I finished in the pantry, it was time to tackle the refrigerator and freezer. Any bits of cheese, ham, herbs gone limp that I found lurking in the back of the frig were put in a pile. They were still good but not perfect, and I did not have the heart to toss them.

Instead, I concocted this recipe for a whole wheat spaghetti frittata. It always feels good to save. That was enough cleaning for one day. It was time to mangia!

Ciao Italia Blog Exclusive: Whole Wheat Spaghetti Frittata
Serves 4

1/2 pound cooked whole wheat spaghetti
6 large eggs, lightly beaten with a fork
1/2 cup diced ham or salami
1 cup grated cheese (what ever you have, Parmigiano Reggiano, mozzarella, cheddar etc.)
Salt and pepper to taste
Olive oil

Combine the spaghetti, eggs, ham or salami, cheese, salt and pepper in a large bowl.

Pour a thin layer of olive oil in a 12 inch non stick saute’ pan and heat the pan on medium high.

Transfer the spaghetti mixture to the pan and pat evenly with a wooden spoon. Cook over medium heat  until  the edges of the frittata begin to move away from the sides of the pan.

Place a slightly larger round dish or pizza pan over the top of the pan and flip the frittata out onto the dish. If the pan seems dry, add a little more olive oil,then return the frittata to the pan to cook the underside.

Transfer the frittata to a platter and cut in wedges to serve.

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