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Secret Ingredient Broccoli Cheddar Frittata

Toronto Holistic Nutritionist Laurie McPhail Secret Ingredient Broccoli Cheddar Frittata

This post is part travelogue because it was my stay last weekend at the picturesque Pangea House (scroll to the end for pictures) that inspired my recipe for Secret Ingredient Broccoli Cheddar Frittata. This riverside heritage inn in Gananoque, Ontario is a real gem and Jody and Geoff, the owners, are wonderful hosts! Your stay includes a hearty, nutritionist-approved breakfast as well. 😉 Ours was as follows:

  • slices of fresh pineapple and watermelon,
  • homemade oat, yogurt and blueberry muffins,
  • berry yogurt smoothies,
  • broccoli & cheddar frittata and mixed greens with house-pickled peppers
  • and hot, buttered toast!

“Cheoff Geoff” loves to chat about food. As he served the frittata, he let us in on the secret ingredient that is a must for a good frittata. Look closely at our breakfast menu and you might be able to guess what it is (hint: he used it a few ways).

Do you give up? It’s yogurt! Specifically Greek yogurt. Now I cook a lot and for some reason it has never occurred to me to put yogurt in my frittatas. But Geoff was so right. It makes the frittata. Join The Nutritional Reset community here to receive the recipe for my Secret Ingredient Broccoli Cheddar Frittata (and upcoming featured recipes). And read on below to find out more.

Secret Ingredient Broccoli Cheddar Frittata

So what’s so great about Greek yogurt in a frittata? Well, given its moisture and richness, it makes for a foolproof, fluffier frittata (almost custardy in texture). And yogurt’s acid tang helps to amplify the flavours of the other ingredients and add depth. Using Greek yogurt also increases the protein and calcium content of the frittata. Don’t get too excited about the probiotics, though, as cooking will kill them. But for probiotic benefit you could always garnish the frittata with a dollop of fresh Greek yogurt. Mix in some lemon juice, garlic and/or fresh herbs to make it even yummier.

If you don’t have Greek yogurt, you can always use regular yogurt that you’ve drained to thicken it. Simply line a strainer with a double thickness of cheesecloth and set it over a bowl. Place the yogurt in the strainer and refrigerate for at least two hours (though more than four hours is even better). Once drained, keep it in a covered container in the fridge. Needless to say, I am talking about plain yogurt here (and definitely not fat-free). Always check the labels on yogurt (and any products you buy). Ideally, you want only whole milk and live bacterial cultures in your yogurt. Avoid any with unnecessary ingredients like stabilizers or sweeteners.

I should be clear that this recipe for Secret Ingredient Broccoli Cheddar Frittata is not Cheoff Geoff’s. His frittata was more gourmet and included a variety of veggies and herbs (some of which I have suggested in the notes to the recipe). This is my streamlined, quicker-to-make version for home use.

So feel free to keep it simple like I have or jazz things up like Cheoff Geoff. I am always trying to convince folks to eat more broccoli but one of the things I love about frittatas is that they are a blank canvas. You can make a frittata out of just about anything and they are simpler to execute than omelettes. Pretty much every weekend, my go-to brunch is a frittata made of whatever odds and ends of vegetables and herbs I have on hand that need using up. The possibilities are endless.

And there are many ways to enjoy them. Hot out of the oven, lukewarm or even cold from the fridge all work well. In fact, you can even use leftover frittata as a filling for a sandwich or wrap. Mini-frittatas made in muffin cups are fun and a handy way to freeze individually-wrapped portions for later use.

In this recipe, I prefer aged cheddar, given its bolder flavour, but you can use medium cheddar or any cheese you prefer. Feta or creamy goat cheese is marvellous too. Or use Pepper Jack for a more Tex Mex style. Serve it with salsa on the side…hola!

I hope you enjoy my Secret Ingredient Broccoli Cheddar Frittata. And whenever you make any frittata, don’t forget the secret ingredient of Greek yogurt. Remember also that the most important ingredient in all good cooking is love. It was no secret to me that Cheoff Geoff definitely cooks with love.

I highly recommend you treat yourself to a stay at the idyllic Pangea House. In fact, we enjoyed it so much that, less than an hour after we’d left, we booked a return stay for later this summer. And here’s another tip, if not quite a secret: when you go, be sure to book the 5-course dinner Geoff offers Wednesday through Saturday evenings.  Our dinner, celebrating our 20th wedding anniversary, was truly spectacular!

Pangea HousePangea House historic riverside inn

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