Dinner Tonight: Frittata with Pepperoni, Basil, and Fennel Seeds Recipe

Dinner Tonight

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Dinner Tonight: Frittata with Pepperoni, Basil, and Fennel Seeds Recipe

[Photograph: Blake Royer]

Every time I cook a frittata, I wonder to myself, "Why don't I make this more often?" Usually nothing more than combining some ingredients in a bowl with eggs, then cooking it almost all the way through on a skillet and finishing briefly under the broiler, it's the ultimate quick meal and a versatile platform for different flavors. Literally, you could put just about anything in a frittata and assuming what you put into it already tastes good together, dinner will be a success.

This recipe, from The Spice Kitchen cookbook, is a relatively unusual pairing of ingredients, but that's what this cookbook is good at doing: recognizing odd affinities between different spices that might not have occurred to you before. In this case, the familiar flavors of pepperoni and mozzarella—which we all know go perfectly together—are gussied up with a little basil and fennel seeds. Now that I think of it, basil fits right in with the mozzarella, and the subtle anise flavor of fennel is welcome. The resulting flavor is more than the sum of its parts—and a nice light dinner before the gluttony of the holidays arrives.

  • Yield:4
  • Active time: 20 minutes
  • Total time:25 minutes


  • 6 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon fennel (anise) seeds, crushed
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1/2 cup frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
  • 1/4 cup sliced pepperoni (about 1/8 pound)
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 cup diced yellow onion
  • 1 bell pepper, diced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced


  1. 1.

    In mixing bowl, whisk eggs with basil, fennel seeds, black pepper, and salt. Stir in mozzarella, spinach, pepperoni, and Parmesan until completely combined.

  2. 2.

    In medium (10-inch) non-stick skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat until shimmering. Add peppers and onions and cook, stirring often, until onions are golden and peppers are soft, 5-7 minutes. Add garlic and cook for an additional minute, then pour in egg mixture and stir well to combine with vegetables.

  3. 3.

    Preheat broiler to high. Over medium heat, cook frittata until frittata stops jiggling and sides are just beginning to set, 7-8 minutes, then slide under broiler 6 inches from heating element for 2-3 minutes to cook top. Loosen sides with spatula and slide onto plate. Serve warm or at room temperature.