Frittata With Leeks and Salad Greens

The following recipe was sent to us by Helen Gerken. She says: “Early in January, every year, lists appear of ‘the best,’ or ‘my favorites.’ All kinds of categories, why not vegetables, I was thinking early one morning, while contemplating a Full Belly leek, its pale stalk so long that I’d been saving it in a newspaper sleeve. Your leeks win first prize in my private vegetable rankings, and my favorite way to use them is in this frittata.”


1 leek
olive oil
about 2 tablespoons fresh herbs, as thyme, oregano, or parsley, or a combination, or 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary
2 tablespoons grated pecorino romano, or the grating cheese you have around
enough spring mix, mizuna, arugula, lettuce, spinach, or a combination, to lightly cover 2 plates
Half Meyer lemon, or “regular” lemon
6 egg whites 
salt and pepper


Spread salad over 2 dinner plates and sprinkle with drops of lemon juice and olive oil. Set aside. 

Heat oven to 350°, with rack in the center.

Slit leek and clean. Split in half and slice thinly, using all the pale tender part. Run out to wherever the herbs are growing, snip what you’ll need, and rinse, strip leaves, maybe chop a bit to release flavor. Whisk egg whites in a small bowl, enough to break them up but not to frothiness. Grate in the cheese.

In an 8-inch non-stick skillet, sauté the leek in olive oil, gently, to tenderness, but not browning. Add the herbs and sauté briefly, till you smell their flavor. Pour egg white/cheese mixture over leek and scramble briefly, with salt and pepper to your taste, until they’re mixed with the leek and spread fairly evenly. Put in the oven for about 6 minutes, until the frittata looks set. Remove, divide in half, put each half on one of the prepared plates, and serve. Mmm. Sumptuous, healthful, a great start to the day.