Factory produced eggs come from hens injected with hormones and antibiotics to speed up their growth process and increase their productivity. These cause them to become crippled because their bodies are developing too fast. They have never experienced running around outside, pecking on grubs, and basking in the sun. These hens just sit for the most part of their lives, unable to move because other than the fact that they are most likely crippled, they live in very cramped and restrictive dwellings. Terrible, right? This is why I do not want to support companies that treat chickens horribly and would rather spend some extra dollars on eggs that are produced humanely. Also, I do not like the thought of ingesting icky eggs in my body. That is so unappetizing! Eggs that come from hens that suffered their whole lives cannot be good for anyone.
Back to cooking eggs though… I entrust this duty to DFJ, he really is better at making them than I am. Cooking eggs requires a watchful eye and some patience. When cooking eggs, these qualities escape from me. It’s probably because I am running late for work and rush the whole process so I can eat and head off to start a busy work day.
Tamar Adler says that she saves the egg making process for a time of the day when she is fully awake to be able to put enough thought into cooking them. For the past two weekends, I have been doing the same and the results were fabulous… in the form of delicious omelets. An omelet is just like a scrambled egg that you don’t scramble too much with some delicious toppings or fillings. It can be open-faced, folded in half, or rolled. You can fill it with anything! Yes, anything… omelets are not limited to the regular onion, tomato, ham, and cheese fixings. There are plenty other things you can put in or on your omelets. Explore the different options. You will be surprised to find out that the best omelets you end up eating are ones with freshened up leftovers from a few nights ago. Think leftover stir-fries, chopped up pieces of cooked meat, leftover roasted veggies… be creative!
Oysters and cauliflower on my omelet? Yup!
Filling/Topping:2-3 teaspoons of the oyster oil from the can
1 large clove of garlic, minced (2 if the cloves are tiny, and more if you really love garlic)
1/8 of an onion, diced
¼ of a bell pepper, diced
¼ cup cooked vegetables, chopped (I used boiled cauliflower seasoned with oliveoil, salt, pepper, and Parmesan cheese)
half of the oysters in the can (8-10 oysters)
1 teaspoon soy sauce
a big squeeze of lemon (about ¼ of a lemon)
a small splash of yogurt whey (the liquid stuff in yogurt) (you can also use heavy cream, milk, or water)
a big pinch of salt
dash of freshly ground black pepper
1/8 tsp chili powder (paprika or cayenne would be great too)
olive oil or butter for cooking
fresh basil, to sprinkle on top (fresh cilantro and parsley)
lemon wedges, to serve
In a small pan, heat 2-3 teaspoons of the oil from the can of oysters over medium heat. Using this oil will give an additional oysterish flavor. When the oil is hot, sauté the garlic until golden brown. Add the diced onion and cook until soft, translucent, and slightly browned at the edges, about 5 minutes. Stir in the diced bell pepper and chopped leftover vegetables and cook for a minute. Add the oysters and cook for 2 minutes. Season with soy sauce and stir to make sure everything gets flavored. Turn off the heat, squeeze some fresh lemon juice into the pan, stir, and set aside.
Omelet:Use a medium sized, non-stick pan to make your omelet. I like my omelets fluffier and the less they spread out, the fluffier they are. Pour just enough olive oil to form about a 4-inch diameter on the bottom of your pan. If you like to use butter, use a tablespoon (more or a little less, I prefer less, but it’s your call). Heat the oil over medium heat. As the oil is warming up, lift the pan and carefully tilt it from side to side so the oil coats the entire bottom and the sides of the pan.
While the oil is heating up, crack the eggs into a bowl and pour in the yogurt whey. A splash of liquid makes for fluffier eggs, so you can use a small splash of cream (for richer and creamier eggs), milk, or water, they all do the job. I use the yogurt whey for added flavoring so I don’t have to use as much salt. Add a big pinch of salt, a dash of freshly ground black pepper, and some chili powder (paprika or cayenne would be good too). Whisk or beat everything well together.
When the oil is hot but not smoking, pour the eggs into the pan. Give it about 6 seconds to set. Using a flat-edged wooden spatula, nudge a section to the middle and tilt the pan to the vacant spot so the unset eggs flow onto the surface of the hot skillet. Allow it to set for a few seconds before you nudge different sides and let the remaining unset eggs cook. Do this one or two more times, until the runny eggs refuse to do anything more than a slight jiggle. You want to leave the top just slightly undercooked so the toppings will have something to stick on. Gently scoop the fixings evenly on top of the omelet and turn off the heat. Sprinkle with fresh herbs, such as basil, cilantro, or parsley for added taste. Serve omelet from the pan, with lemon wedges.
Have a blessed Sunday friends!