Tag Archives: duck eggs

Duck Egg Frittata with Asparagus (Hen’s Eggs Can Also be Used!)

18 May

We spend our Mother’s Days in the North Fork of Long Island (where I expect I’ll end up living one day), Abu, Padushi, Leandro, and me. We had another beautiful time this year, eating and drinking and having fun with friends.

The Long Island Sound was our back yard!

And of course on the way home we picked up some farm fresh goodness to keep savoring the visit.

In season now: ASPARAGUS, so we got some from Sang Lee. Really, when asparagus is in season in the North Fork, it is worth the drive just for that, even if you don’t have anyone to visit!

Sang Lee asparagus

And we stopped for eggs at Ty Llwyd. Our friend Dave had four duck eggs available too, and since my last experience with them was so memorable, I took them all.

Unwashed eggs don’t require refrigeration – for a few days anyway….and these were definitely unwashed! (I rinse before cracking though…)

With ingredients this good, you don’t have to do much. In fact, the more you do, the more you get in the way sometimes (a lesson I never seem to have learned, some might say, but they can just hush up, because it’s my blog post and I’ll fry if I want to). However, if you would like to try a Hollandaise, click to visit my fellow blogger Mad Dog’s step by step instructions!)

So I went for something pretty simple and non-fussy, but with style. This frittata shows off the flavors of Spring, looks rustic-wonderful, and doesn’t take much doing. Sort of the kind of thing that Leandro should learn to do when he’s old enough to bring me breakfast in bed for Mother’s Day!

Gorgeous!

Duck Egg Frittata

2 Tbs extra virgin olive oil

½ onion, chopped (red preferred)

Approximately 10 asparagus spears, trimmed, and sliced thin on the bias (may be precooked; I used leftover roasted, which were lovely)

4 duck eggs (6-8 hen’s eggs if you want to substitute!)

¼ Cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano or other good grating cheese

Pinch of salt

Heat oil in a small to medium ovenproof skillet at medium until loose and fragrant. Add onions, stir to coat and sauté for five minutes or more – until tender and browned. If using uncooked asparagus, add it one minute after the onions. If using cooked, add after the onions are tender and browned, then cook an additional minute. Either way, reserve a couple of the tops for garnish.

Meanwhile, in a separate bowl whisk eggs, cheese, and salt together to mix thoroughly. Pour eggs over vegetables in pan and mix thoroughly. Preheat the broiler to high/450°F.

Using a flexible spatula, turn the egg mixture away from the sides of the skillet as the egg solidifies, allowing the uncooked egg to run to the bottom of the pan. Continue this until egg mixture is well set – 5-10 minutes, depending on the thickness of the frittata (depth of skillet) and the stove top heat. Don’t rush this. You can stick a knife in the center to measure progress. 

Use the spatula to get under the frittata occasionally and make sure it doesn’t stick to the bottom. Shaking gently every so often can also help.

As the top is almost set, stick the reserved asparagus tops into the surface so they look pretty!

When egg is set, put the whole skillet under the broiler for 3-5 minutes (longer if you frittata is thick) until the top is browned.

Let sit for five minutes, then serve.

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Know Your Food: Egg-Sighting Adventures in the North Fork

17 Mar

Be advised: this post starts off a bit serious — grim, even — but lightens up fairly quickly and has a happy finish!

Stonyfield Farms-– the organic dairy company from which I buy a lot of yogurt and receive too many magazines thanks to their rewards program — is running a Know Your Food campaign (“This Year I Will Know My Food”) that has stuck in my head. As it happens, the USDA is doing the same thing (Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food). Both limit themselves to farmers they work with…still, it is a start, isn’t it?

Leandro and I know a fair bit about who makes what we eat – when it comes to seasonal local stuff – but it’s hard to know everything. And it gets scarier and scarier, what with the pink slime in school lunch meat (can we get any more cavalier – or gruesome — about how we feed children?) and arsenic in apple juice and e. coli everywhere…I am sick, not just because it’s a horrible thing nutritionally, but because I am sick of reading about it, sick of worrying about it, and sick of how complicated it has become to get simple healthy food on the table these days. Heavy sigh.

Can you guess what this is?

But, let’s brighten up and lighten up here.

Here's another look!

We recently spent an amazing couple of days out on the North Fork of Long Island (our Bordeaux on the Sound, as it were), picking up wine from Paumanok, spending quality time with Deborah Pittorino Rivera at The Greenporter Hotel  which she and her husband, Bill, own and where she also serves up incredible food at La Cuvee Wine Bar & Restaurant (see her blog, Seasoned Fork,  here), riding the carousel — Leandro learned how to grab the rings — and watching the Shelter Island ferries shuttle cars back and forth.

We  stopped by one of my favorite places to get fresh, organic eggs. Ty Llwyd Farm has the best fresh eggs (duck eggs too! More on that later), organic vegetables, and sometimes flowers (pussy willows right now!) in Northville on Sound Ave. They also have manure and hay – they do a bit of everything and are moving into dairy. If you blink, you might miss the homely wooden sign – look for a big nursery (van der something or another) across the road and you are close.

It is an egg sorter!

This time I hit pay dirt! The last few times I have stopped for eggs, Leandro was asleep in the car, so he didn’t get to see the cool old egg sorter in operation. This time he was wide-awake – on fire and crunchy from too much enforced restaurant sitting, in fact – and the sorter was in use to sort eggs for the cognoscenti stopping by for the their weekly supply. So owner David Wines was kind enough to let the little guy sort his own eggs…you roll them onto a little chute and they travel along a line of egg-sized scales measuring jumbo, extra-large, large, etc. and the egg rolls off when it tips the correct weighted scale.

We then proceeded to visit all the animals – you may remember that Leandro is very found of chickens – only the egg-layers, though — so we saw the pullets, the free-rangers (who came running to see my little hen-whisperer), the cows, the geese marching in formation, the ducks…

The henhouse...a pretty nice set-up if you are a hen!

When I asked Dave how long he has been there, he said, “Oh, about 300 years” or something like that. Turns out, his people were farmers from Cornwall who came to the North Fork via Connecticut centuries ago and the family still farms. The name Ty Llwyd (pronounced tee clewed) is from his Welsh wife, Liz, also from a farming family.

It was a wonderful couple of hours we spent and we came home with two dozen fresh hens’ eggs and two duck eggs ($0.75 each) which I fried up a few days later.

The duck eggs

The taste is very similar to chicken’s eggs, but denser and richer somehow. One egg on one slice of toast was enough to fill me for hours. Very satisfying!

So no recipe for today, aside from a teaspoon of vegetable oil heated at medium high, crack two eggs in, sprinkle with good salt, lower heat and cook for four minutes or until they reach your preferred doneness. I covered the eggs to make the heat more even to be able to cook them at lower heat and more slowly. As adaptable as eggs are, a lot of high heat doesn’t do them any favors.

So, duck eggs (which are said to pack more nutritional punch that hens’ eggs) were a great success. People bake with them, but I don’t think that is cost effective. I’d rather enjoy them on their own!

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