Monday, October 20, 2008

Perfecting the omelet, Part 3: Success.

omelet 10.19.08

And so, after weeks of scrambling and sliding and flipping and spilling and cursing and eating, I've accomplished the perfect omelet -- at least in my eyes. Go ahead and argue what exactly makes a perfect omelet, but to me, it's a load of cheeses and goodies wrapped snugly in a bright blanket of perfectly cooked egg. Gooey, melty cheese pairs with crisp, slightly cooked vegetables and flavorful meats, with a layer of soft yet firm egg gently folded over them. But really, I suppose what it all comes down to is the perfect fold.

This post actually comes in two parts. The first part reflects on the night of that first perfect fold...

It was a random weeknight, a night of no cooking, a night I wasn't even that hungry, if you can believe that. For dinner I had tuna salad with crackers and a poached egg over field greens. Murdo wanted an omelet so, since I needed the practice, I made one for him. I had no idea this omelet was to be the one.

I used the usual fillings that are always in the fridge: onions, green peppers, pastrami, and cheese. Cooked the fillings beforehand, set aside, cooked the eggs, placed the goodies on one half of the pan and, slowly, slid the egg off the pan and onto a plate. At the last minute -- flip.

The omelet folded over perfectly.

I literally yelped (by "yelp" I mean gasped and squealed at the same time) and Murdo, who was in the kitchen with me, turned to see what on earth would cause me to make such a noise. I had just made the perfect omelet.

omelet

Honestly, I never knew an omelet could make me squeal and jump for joy. Who knew a girl could love eggs so damn much?

The second part of this post is told through pictures. On Sunday morning at Mom and Dad's house, I showed off my new skills and made omelets for my parents:

omelet 10.19.08
omelet 10.19.08
omelet 10.19.08

This last omelet was the third one I made and not-so-perfect at all. Taught me a lesson: When making many omelets, wipe the pan clean after each omelet, then add more butter. I didn't wipe and just added more butter each time, so by the time I got to the third, it started sticking to the cooked remnants on the skillet and the egg tore. I was devastated for about 45 seconds.

And then I ate the omelet, and all was well with the world.

7 comments:

  1. yes! heavily greased skillet and the right amount of filling are crucial! although i never tried completely flipping the entire omelet in the pan...i've tried that method in the past, and it just doesn't work for me.

    thanks :)

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  2. what settings do you use to take the up close food pictures? i have the same camera and have been trying to figure it out. Yours always come out so clear! good job! You guys coming down this weekend? i know joe is.

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  3. shanna - thank you, thank you!

    ryan - macro, all the way. it's the setting with the flower on it. i'm still trying to figure out how to take good pictures in dark restaurants without using flash. murdo suggested bringing my own light source when eating out. i don't think i want to go there just yet. let me know if you figure it out...also, don't know about this weekend. this is the first i've heard of it.

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  4. Hmmmmm, I'm really really hungry now. I'll have to see if I can do the same tomorrow. :)

    For taking pictures in a restaurant without a flash there's a couple of tips you can try...

    - Steady hands - When the flash is off you have to keep your camera absolutely still. Try using an empty glass, upside-down to act as a makeshift tripod.

    - Take advantage of the lighting around you - Such as table candles and see if you can have your dining partner tilt the plate (if it doesn't disturb the presentation) towards the light and your camera.

    - Increase the light sensitivity of your camera - Most digitals have a setting called ISO. Increasing that number will help in lower light situations.

    Bon appetit!

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  5. Thanks for the tips, Erwin! I'll try messing with the ISO settings and keeping my hands steady. Problem is, I usually get way too impatient at restaurants and end up giving up and eating. :)

    Glad you stopped by...I checked out your website -- beautiful photos!

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