Easy Vegetable Frittata
I love breakfast. It’s my favorite meal of the day!
Protein at Breakfast
It’s important to eat protein at breakfast each day, but it’s important to find the right balance for your body. Generally, most people feel well when they combine the right mix of protein, fat, and carbohydrate. Many people like eggs at breakfast, but they forget the other two components of fat and carbohydrate. Eating eggs alone without vegetables or plant-based fat is not only boring (!), but it compromises your body’s need for a bigger boost of vitamins and minerals first thing in the morning. Adding a few slivers of avocado gives you the plant-based fat that will keep you full.
Are eggs healthy?
There’s a lot of controversy about whether eggs are healthy. In general, most people do well with 7 eggs or fewer per week. There are some who can tolerate more, and there are some who tolerate less.
How do you know what’s best for you?
Pay attention to;
How do you feel when you eat eggs? If your energy is great, you feel satiated, and your digestion is great after eating eggs, then they are probably a good choice.
How does your cholesterol respond to eggs? Our cholesterol is influenced by two factors: how much cholesterol we absorb from food and how much cholesterol we produce in our liver. Some of us are high absorbers from food (that’s me!), some of us are high producers in our liver, and some of us are a combination of both. How do you know? An easy home test is trying a plant-based diet for six weeks and seeing what happens to your numbers. If you want something more definitive, come see me at Stamford Health for a more comprehensive lab analysis.
In addition to being a source of protein, eggs are also rich in
Choline (important for metabolism)
Biotin (a B vitamin that’s important for hair growth)
Vitamin A (important for immune function and cell growth)
Lutein (an antioxidant that’s important for eye health).
Eggs are also one of the few sources of Vitamin D in our diets.
What kind of eggs to buy
Going to the store to buy eggs is not easy. There are so many brands and so many descriptors! Free-range, pasture-raised, cage-free organic, Omega 3 - rich . . . it’s confusing!
I recommend organic, pasture-raised eggs. Organic is good because anything coming from an animal should be organic. Pasture-raised is good because it means the chickens have had a yard to run around in, which means they’ve eaten bugs and worms and other creatures that gives them a richer nutrient composition . . . at least in theory.
The ultimate test is to look at the color of the yolks. If the yolks are a golden yellow color, then you’re probably getting a good egg. If they are pale yellow, then probably not.
The best eggs I ever had were from a patient who raised chickens who had full use of her back yard. Those egg yolks were bright orange!
De-seed your tomato: For this recipe, I recommend de-seeding your tomatoes because otherwise they are too watery in the pan. Simply cut your tomato into quarters and cut out the seeds, leaving the firmer outer pieces for sautéing. (See the picture.) Alternatively, use a red pepper.
Let your eggs sit for a bit: Vigorously whisking your eggs with salt and allowing them to sit for a few minutes before use makes them fluffier.
Snap your asparagus: To know how much of the end of the asparagus stalk to take off, just bend near the end and let the end snap off. The asparagus naturally snaps where it’s supposed to!
Makes 6 portions
8 organic pasture-raised eggs
1 bunch asparagus (chopped) or 2 cups green beans (chopped)
1 medium tomato (de-seeded) or 1 red pepper (chopped)
Salt & pepper to taste
1 Tbsp fresh dill, chopped (optional)
1/4 cup Irish cheddar cheese, cut into small cubes or shredded (optional)
1-2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 avocado, sliced
Pre-heat oven on broil.
Whisk eggs with desired amount of salt and let sit while you prep your vegetables.
Chop asparagus or green beans into bite-sized pieces. (See tips above)
Dice tomato or red pepper.
Heat an oven-proof stainless steel pan over medium heat on your stove for a few minutes. You’ll know when it’s ready to use because a drip of water will sizzle gently. (If it doesn’t sizzle, let it heat a little longer. If it sizzles vigorously, turn the heat down and let it cool off a bit.)
Use enough EVOO to thinly coat the entire surface of your pan. Sauté the asparagus/green beans for a few minutes, then add the tomatoes/red pepper and sauté a few minutes more. Vegetables should be mostly cooked before adding eggs.
Whisk in pepper and dill (if desired) to your eggs. Pour whisked eggs into the pan. Sprinkle with cheese. Continue cooking on medium heat until mostly set on the bottom and still a little runny on top.
Place in pre-heated broiler for 1-3 minutes to finish cooking.
Remove from heat and let sit for a few minutes. Then cut and serve from the pan topped with avocado.