Its Ladino name reveals the fritada’s origin in Sepharad (Old Spain). In fact, the dish—containing vegetables, eggs, and usually cheese—was so identified with Jewish life there that a continued taste for it was a telltale sign that a professed converso was still a Jew in his heart. As
Also known as almodrote as well as several other names in the Diaspora, these crustless casseroles, enriched with roasted eggplant, sautéed spinach, or zucchini, and oven-baked now, are extremely popular, especially among Jews from Greece, Turkey, and the Balkans. Warm or at room temperature, fritadas are ubiquitous at the desayuno brunch served with a host of salads after morning services on Shabbat and holidays, or as a first course at meatless Sabbath dinners.
This well-flavored zucchini version has plenty of pizzazz. A family favorite, it is especially nice for Shavuot, Break-the-Fast, and simple light suppers whenever our greenmarket overflows with either juicy emerald zucchini or the pale green Middle Eastern varieties and fragrant herbs.
If you can find the delicious zucchini blossoms—or better yet, grow them yourself—they make a stunning presentation, a bright orange starburst folded into the center of the cheesy casserole.
Shred the zucchini in a food processor or over the large holes of a hand grater. Transfer the zucchini to a colander, sprinkle with
While the zucchini is draining, heat
Preheat oven to 350°F.
Mash the feta in a large bowl. Beat in the eggs, then stir in
Generously grease the bottom and sides of a deep
Bake for about 50 minutes, or until the fritada is firm and golden-topped, and a tester inserted in the center comes out clean.
Let the fritada rest until set before cutting.
© 2008 Jayne Cohen. All rights reserved.