Frittatas are a great mealtime solution. They are simple to make, satisfying to eat and endlessly versatile; many a leftover vegetable – be it half a red pepper, a few mushrooms or a handful of cherry tomatoes – can find a willing home here.
Courgettes are often dismissed as being a bit bland. This may be true, but they absorb flavours - in this case the punchy garlic, salty parmesan and zingy lemon zest - really well. They also add substance to the dish, meaning that it is filling without being carbohydrate-heavy. Although it might seem like a hassle, it is worth taking the time to salt the courgettes; this draws out the excess moisture, preventing them from leaking water.
Courgettes are low in fat and calories and contain vitamins A and C, as well as folate and potassium. Because of their cholesterol content, eggs shouldn't be eaten every day; however, they are a good source of protein, contain omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins A, D and E as well as iron, phosphorous, selenium and zinc.
Frittatas taste equally good when cold, making them perfect picnic fodder - you could transport it in the pan, ready to be sliced when you arrive, or cut it into wedges and take to work as an interesting alternative to a sandwich.
Courgette and pea frittata
300g courgette, coarsely grated
2 tbsp olive oil
1 garlic clove, peeled and finely chopped
1 white onion, finely sliced
1 lemon, zest only
75g frozen peas, defrosted
handful mint leaves, finely chopped
35g parmesan, finely grated
salt and black pepper
Tip the grated courgette into a colander and sprinkle with a little salt. Leave for 30 minutes, then squeeze out any excess water with your hands.
Place a pan containing a tablespoon of olive oil over a medium heat. Add the garlic, onion and grated courgettes and cook for eight to 10 minutes, or until softened and starting to turn golden brown. Remove the pan from the heat.
Crack the eggs into a bowl and beat together lightly. Carefully fold in the cooled courgette mixture, followed by the lemon zest, peas, mint and a little black pepper.
Turn your grill on to high. Add the remaining tablespoon of olive oil to a frying pan with a diameter of approximately 20cm and place over a medium-low heat. Pour in the egg and courgette mixture and cook for 10 minutes. When the top is still slightly liquid, sprinkle over the grated parmesan and place under the grill for three to four minutes, or until the surface is lightly coloured and the frittata springs back when pressed. Remove from the oven and cut into wedges.