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December 24, 2007
Winning the War of the
There is debate, raging always, about how to make the
perfect omelet. It has sparked violence, and it is said that there was
serious discussion at the Constitutional Convention of excluding talk of
omelets from the First Amendment on the grounds that it produced such
discord. In fact, it’s said that the Burr-Hamilton duel was actually
over the great “two or three egg” controversy.
Both men, sadly, were wrong, because the perfect omelet
starts with two-and-a-half eggs, lightly beaten with just a dash of
milk. The end result should be a mixture that is evenly colored a nice,
white yellow. Some suggest that perhaps you substitute water, for milk
tends to burn. The answer to this, he says with raised fists, is if you
pay attention to what you’re doing this won’t be a problem.
Some have suggested that you can achieve this quickly, and
also mix in a little air, in a food processor. The decision is,
naturally, yours to make – especially if it helps to avoid bloodshed –
and if you prefer taking the easy way out, it is acceptable.
The next step is to grease the bottom of a pan. Butter is
preferable, although a nice, light coating of olive oil is also
acceptable. Your pan should be round, and big enough that the eggs can
spread along the bottom to a nice, light coating.
It is preferable, in this case, to use a cast iron
skillet, because those tend to spread heat much better than flimsier
made alternatives (and, in the case of Teflon, are less likely to some
day give you brain cancer).
Keep the heat on medium, especially if you are the kind of
person who is easily distracted. We are not striving for good enough
here, but for perfect. And perfect is not a forgiving creature.
When your skillet bottom is warm but not quite hot, pour
your eggs into the bottom and allow them to fill out a perfect circle.
In the center, you will add the filling. Most people will tell you that
that you will eventually flip half your omelet onto the other half and
create what would appear to be a taco with a shell constructed of egg.
We are after a different shape here.
For our purposes, the perfect omelet filling includes some
fresh tarragon and shredded Swiss cheese. In the name of peace and
non-violence, however, this should be left to the tastes of the
individual (even if the individual is wrong, he says while cocking a
Place the fresh tarragon and Swiss cheese in an even layer
at the center of the circle of setting egg.
Once the egg has solidified, flip each rounded edge inward
until you have created what appears to not be a taco with shell
constructed of egg. You may even consider it to be a form of burrito
with a shell of egg.
Once you have created the packet, flip the entire thing
over and let it cook for a minute or two. This will seal the envelope,
as it were, and also melt the cheese inside.
Put on a plate, and mock the efforts of others. Prepare to
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