Get as much of the yolk as you prefer

Health-conscious cooks routinely toss the yolks and stick with the whites when preparing eggs. Good idea? Not necessarily.

By reducing

By reducing

Health-conscious cooks routinely toss the yolks and stick with the whites when preparing eggs. Good idea? Not necessarily.

Eggs are packed with nutrients, and most them — vitamins A and E, folate, calcium, iron and lutein — are in the yolks. Sure, yolks also pack dietary cholesterol, but many scientists now think saturated fat is the bigger culprit in raising blood cholesterol.

Besides being loaded with nutrients, eggs are satisfying, so eating them can help you curb between-meal hunger.

Of course, if you’re really trying to limit your fat and cholesterol intake (the yolk does contain all the fat), an egg white omelette or scrambled egg whites are fine. But they can be rubbery and lack the flavour of whole eggs.

A good strategy is to hedge your bets by using some, but not all of the yolks. For instance, prepare an omelette using one whole egg and two egg whites.

When using eggs in baked goods, quiches or custards, you usually can substitute egg whites for up to half of the yolks without substantially changing the dish. Use two egg whites in place of one whole egg.

This Mexican-style frittata calls for a reduced number of egg yolks, yet still has great flavour and texture.

The beaten eggs are combined with reduced-fat shredded cheese and poured over a bed of cooked, diced potatoes and chunky tomato salsa before being slowly baked. To make the dish even faster to prepare, use pre-diced potatoes, which you can find in the refrigerated case in the produce section of most markets.

A wedge of this frittata, served with a salad and some crusty bread, is perfect for a light supper or brunch. It reheats well, so leftovers make a convenient meal the following day.

Mexican-Style Frittata

375 ml (1 1/2 cups) diced red or white potatoes

1 ml (1/4 tsp) salt

175 ml (3/4 cup) chunky tomato salsa

4 large eggs

2 large egg whites

30 ml (2 tbsp) all-purpose flour

5 ml (1 tsp) dried oregano

1 ml (1/4 tsp) ground black pepper

250 ml (1 cup) reduced-fat Mexican-style shredded cheese blend

125 ml (1/2 cup) chopped scallions

Place potatoes in a medium saucepan and add enough cold water to cover. Bring to a simmer and cook until just tender, about 5 minutes. Alternatively, place them in a glass bowl, cover with plastic, then microwave on high until tender, 3 to 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, heat oven to 180 C (350 F). Coat a 23-cm (9-inch) glass pie plate with cooking spray.

Spread potatoes over bottom of pie plate and season with salt. Spoon salsa over potatoes.

In a mixing bowl, whisk together eggs, egg whites, flour, oregano and pepper until smooth. Stir in cheese and scallions.

Pour mixture over potatoes and salsa. With a fork, gently stir mixture so cheese and potatoes are evenly distributed. Bake frittata for 30 to 35 minutes or until it is set at the centre and golden on top. Slice into wedges to serve.

Makes 6 servings.

Nutrition information per serving (values are rounded to the nearest whole number): 160 calories, 61 calories from fat, 7 g fat (3 g saturated, 0 g trans fats), 133 mg cholesterol, 13 g carbohydrate, 12 g protein, 2 g fibre, 509 mg sodium.

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