When I was a teenager, still young and oh-so impressionable, I was introduced to this older woman who I deeply admired. We volunteered together and frequently met up for meals and coffee and chat sessions. She had a successful career and disposable income, took care of her younger siblings, spoke her mind, had nice hair, snowboarded on weekends, dressed well – all these traits I picked up on when I was younger. I really looked up to her and saw her as a great older sister/ role model that I never had. To a certain extent, I hoped that I could be as poised and put together and sure of my place in the world as she was by the time I was her age. Over the years, I went off to college then left for NYC, and had nominal interactions with her, as such things happen given time and distance. We were still friendly and I continued to have fond memories of her.
Kale, Sausage and Potato Frittata
1 bunch of kale (Dino is great here), cleaned, de-stemmed, rough chop
1 small yellow onion, diced
2-3 cloves of garlic, rough mince
2-3 large Russett potatoes, peeled, small diced and cooked (boiled or otherwise)
3 breakfast sausage links, casing removed and rough chop
1/2 cup of grated Parmigiano Reggiano (or to taste)
a few dashes of red pepper flakes, to taste [cayenne works too]
salt & pepper to taste
Preheat oven to the Broil setting at 450*F.
In a large bowl, whisk all the eggs and half of the grated Parm and generously season with salt + pepper + pepper flakes (all to taste). In a large skillet on medium-high heat, add the sausage meat and use a spatula or wooden spoon to break up the meat as it cooks. The sausage meat is pretty fatty, so no additional cooking oil will be needed. Once the sausage meat has browned up, add the diced onion and garlic, cooking until fragrant and the onions are soft. Add the potatoes and give it a few minutes to warm up. Throw in the kale, giving it a quick turn. Pour in the whisked eggs and stir to combine the wet and dry ingredients. Let the frittata set for another minute or two on the stove. Top the frittata with the remaining grated Parm and bake until the eggs are fully set, maybe 6-8 minutes / when the top is golden. Once cooked through, the frittata is best served a bit cooler, giving the eggs a chance to set and congeal a bit. If you are impatient like I was, the eggs will still be a bit wet and your frittata will fall apart once you’ve sliced it into pieces. Doesn’t matter – it’s still delish.
The beautiful thing is that the crust is crisp thanks to the Parmigiano AND the browned kale – it’s like you get a frittata and free cheesy kale chips too! Win-win. It’s a quick Sunday brunch meal but also something you could serve up in a sandwich (like this) or with a salad. There are infinite permutations possible – all more satisfying than the next. Try it out for yourself and let me know how it goes!
Recently, I got wind of her from another friend – she’s married now and has a lovely baby on the way, but my fond memories were savagely destroyed. What I had thought was amiability was actually a deep annoyance and dislike for me. I couldn’t tell you the root cause, as she never once told me anything or hinted that she was annoyed or disliked me. It continues to eat at me that she never gave me the opportunity to understand why or at least give me an option to remedy things – and instead I find out from a third party. For someone I sooo admired, this behavior seemed a bit petty and passive aggressive – not a very mature way of handling things. As an adult, I already find it difficult to make new good friends. It’s hard when you learn, that you’re losing the same ones you thought you had. Though I am saddened by this, I guess my lesson here is that there are some things completely outside of your control. I could yearn and wish for that relationship and a deep connection with someone, but if it’s not mutual – it would never happen or be as fulfilling or sustainable as I craved. I mourn this lost connection, but now value (more than ever) those I still have.
Thanks for reading,