A Perfect Omelet

How to make the perfect omelet

Being back in the swing of the school year and the swirl of parents that comes along with it, I’m reminded of the rich community of moms around me: So smart, and so full of clever ideas. Just this morning I found myself swapping lunch packing tips with Kelly, a mother of two challenged with a picky eater, and healthy snack ideas with Suzanne, whose kids have put the kabosh on dried fruits and nuts (raw almonds and unsulfured apricots can only take you so far). I was impressed with how both approach the task of nourishing kids.

Maybe it sounds mundane, chattering about the nitty gritty of feeding kids, but exchanging stories and recipes is a time-honored tradition of parenting. It’s often where I get my best ideas.  In this spirit of sharing, I’m hoping today’s post will become a recipe swap of sorts. I’ll start by offering up my most tried and true quick dinner: a simple omelet. Then, I’d love to hear what you do for dinner on those nights when you blow into the house late in the day and have to get supper on the table in a flash, so please leave comments below!

A Simple French-Style Omelet

Now, onto the perfect omelet. I wasn’t particularly keen on this preparation for eggs until about 10 years ago when I had my first taste of a classic one over lunch at a restaurant in France (but of course). The omelet was tender, gently cooked, with just enough Gruyere to make you want more. It was nothing like the overstuffed and overcooked ones I’d been eating all my life. I ate one almost daily for the remainder of the trip and returned determined to make a proper omelet at home. It’s now often the first thing I teach in my cooking classes for kids, and is my “go-to” dish when the cupboards are bare and the dinner hour approaches.

Just a few ingredients

A classic Fresh omelet with a simple salad or vegetable to go with it is a perfectly nourishing and satisfying meal. All that’s required are a couple of eggs, a knob of butter, salt and pepper. Cheese is a nice addition, but not essential. A glass of white wine for the cook never hurts.

Raw eggs are sticky business, which is why omelets are ideally made with a non-stick pan. Cast iron will do the trick in a pinch. For a two to three-egg omelet, an eight inch skillet it about right and one with sloped slides is even better.

Step-By-Step to a Perfect Omelet

The images below walk you through the basic technique in the recipe below. Don’t be discouraged if you don’t nail it the first time around. Eggs are relatively inexpensive and even your rejects will still be tasty.

whisk eggs for the perfect omelet

Whisk two eggs in a small bowl with a pinch of salt and a few cracks of black pepper. 

Pouring eggs into pan for omelet

Heat a small non-stick skillet over medium. Swirl butter in the pan and when hot, add eggs. 

How to make the perfect omelet

Once the eggs have set along the bottom, use a rubber spatula to nudge an edge of the egg toward the center. Then, tilt the pan, and allow raw egg to drift into the space.

How to make the perfect omelet

Continue nudging the egg in various places around the rim until the egg is nearly cooked along the surface. Eggs are delicate and will continue to cook even after the omelet is out of the pan. 

How to make the perfect omelet

Scatter the cheese over the egg. 

How to make the perfect omelet

Use a rubber spatula lift one side of the omelet and fold it in half. 

How to make the perfect omelet

Tilt the pan so the egg slides right out and onto a plate. 

How to make the perfect omelet

Enjoy!

How to make the perfect omelet
4 from 3 votes
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Cheese Omelet

When I first tried a proper French omelet, it was nothing like what I’d eaten in American diners, which tend to be supersized and packed with ingredients. Instead it was delicate, filled with just cheese, and melt-in-your-mouth tender. Considering that omelets were effectively invented in France, it’s no wonder they know what they’re doing. Hopefully you’ll like it just as much as we did.
Course Breakfast, lunch, dinner
Cuisine French
Prep Time 1 minute
Cook Time 4 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes
Servings 1
Author katiemorford

Ingredients

  • 2 eggs
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • ½ tablespoon butter
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons grated Cheddar or Gruyere cheese

Instructions

  1. Crack the eggs into a small bowl, add salt and a few turns with a pepper grinder. Use a fork to vigorously whisk the eggs until they are one solid yellow color.
  2. Set a saute pan (ideally a nonstick one) that’`1s 8 to 10 inches across over medium heat. Add the butter and let it melt, tilting the pan this way and that so it coats the entire bottom of the pan and up the sides a bit.

  3. When the pan is hot, pour in the eggs and let them settle for 10 seconds until the bottom cooks a bit. Using a rubber spatula, stir the eggs in the pan a few times. Then, let the eggs settle, tilting the pan to help the raw parts spread to the edges. Use a rubber spatula to lift the edge of the omelet in one spot and tilt the pan so the liquid parts drift into the bare spot and set. Do this in 4 or 5 places around the perimeter of the omelet until the top is nearly cooked. Sprinkle the cheese over the eggs and remove from heat. If the eggs don’t look quite done and the cheese needs to melt a little longer, put a lid over the pan for about 30 seconds.
  4. Use a rubber spatula to lift one edge of the omelet and fold it over, so it forms a half moon. Lift the pan off the stove, tilt it, and slide the omelette onto a plate.

Recipe Notes

Feel free to add a few tablespoons of one of the following fillings along with the cheese: chopped ham, chopped spinach, crumbled bacon, or sliced sauteed mushrooms.

Comments

09.02.2011 at 10:54 AM #

Stephanie

Our “go to” meal is a bean & cheese burrito. We always have cheese on hand to shred and some cans of whole beans. If the kids are not looking I will shred some zucchinni into the tortilla as well.

09.02.2011 at 10:54 AM #

katiemorford

Love it. Thanks

09.02.2011 at 11:44 AM #

Jill Castle

Chicken noodle soup (homemade or canned) with an egg dropped in (one for each eater). Very satisfying and quick. Or pancakes! Brinner (breakfast for dinner). 🙂

09.02.2011 at 12:57 PM #

Natalie

When in a rush to get dinner on the table I saute some garlic in olive oil and throw in a can of black beans, salt and pepper. Pop a potato in the microave and serve beans on the split spud topped with sour cream, yogurt or cheese with some green onions. Served with a salad or leftover green veggies and it’s the perfect meal!

09.02.2011 at 3:49 PM #

Pamela Prime

yum! this will be dinner tonight!
thank you…

09.02.2011 at 6:05 PM #

Leslie

OMG, just made, tasted and gave some corn, avacado, onion salad to my neighbor.
He just called to say he was eating it and it is the best thing he has ever had!!
It is delicious and SO easy..Thank you Katie

09.02.2011 at 6:05 PM #

katiemorford

Thanks for telling me that. Made my day!

09.03.2011 at 11:11 AM #

Alison

I go for a quick pasta. Sautee garlic in olive oil. Add diced tomatoes, capers, olives and throw in Arugula or spinach at the end to just wil it.

09.04.2011 at 7:33 AM #

Suzanne

My go to and kid’s all time favorite is breaded white fish with Old Bay seasoning and Lemon. I often use Talapia, but any white fish will work. Salt and pepper the fish, drizzle olive oil on both sides, coat with bread crumbs(panko, italian, plain all good), arrange in pan, sprinkle Old Bay Seasoning on the fish, lay slices of lemon on top, bake at 375 till done(10+ min). Sometime I remove the lemon slices and broil it for the last minute or so to make the top a little crunchy. While it bakes I usually saute a bag of spinach and slice up a bagette – Done!

09.04.2011 at 7:33 AM #

katiemorford

Excellent. Thanks!

09.04.2011 at 12:34 PM #

Pam

I’m going to second the pasta suggestion. I take whatever vegetables are in the house (broccoli, cauliflower, kale, zucchini, tomatoes, etc), steam them if necessary (broccoli, cauliflower) in a big non-stick wok until al dente while the pasta is cooking then add tomatoes, onion, garlic and saute. I also throw in whatever greens are around, usually arugula, just to wilt it and then add the pasta when it is done with some parmesan cheese. If there is bacon handy a couple diced strips usually get sauteed with the vegetables too. Pasta with ham or bacon (cut into slivers or small pieces) and lots of peas is also a popular last minute meal here.

09.06.2011 at 5:02 PM #

Leslie

Not being Jewish and growing up back east in a small beach town north of Boston I never ate Latkes. Trying them 20 years ago for the first time I loved them and we eat them often.

The recipe from one of our favorite stories, Latkes, Latkes Good to Eat by Naomi Howland, is:

3 large potatoes (what ever I have), 2 eggs, 1/4 C onion, 1 Tbsp chopped parsley, 1/2 tsp salt, 1/8 tsp pepper 3 Tbsp flour.
I add more egg and a bit more flour.
In cuisinart, grate onion and potatoe then mix and fry in a pan of olive oil and butter (not too much).

Serve with salad, applesauce and sour cream..

09.06.2011 at 8:12 PM #

J McKay

Fish supper…Sardines are abundant and fished in environmentally friendly ways. Empty a can of sardines in tomato sauce into a bowl, toss with some fresh cooked spaghetti (add a garlic clove to the boiling water and mash after draining) and a handful of finely chopped parsley and you have a plateful of goodness. Season and drizzle with olive oil if the sauce was lacking.

09.06.2011 at 8:12 PM #

katiemorford

Sardines are a wonderful, sustainable, healthy and delicious “fast food”. Thanks for that one.

09.07.2011 at 1:21 PM #

Meggin

Saute some garlic in a little olive oil then add a pound of lean ground beef, season with S&P then brown. Once the meat is cooked pour in approx 1.5 cups of stock and a bag of frozen mixed veggies and put the lid on and turn off the heat. Cook up some whole wheat noodles and serve meat mixture on top. My family enjoys this!!!

10.17.2011 at 7:27 PM #

Tanya H.

For a quick meal, I like to bake salmon in the oven, with either lemon juice and several cloves of garlic, or, spread with mustard and maple syrup or brown sugar. Wilt some spinach while the fish is baking, and prepare a bit of couscous with chopped veggies (celery, onion, peppers — whatever’s in the fridge) and spices (usually garlic, parsley, cumin & cinnamon) and we;re good to go!

10.17.2011 at 7:27 PM #

katiemorford

That sounds delicious.

04.06.2018 at 8:22 AM #

Travis

Pasta dinner, take a package of ramen noodles and put them in a pan of boiling water, here’s the critical part! Pour most of the water out and leave some, add the seasoning and two eggs and slowly stir as the egg cools with the noodles and seasoning easy, cheap, delicious

07.09.2018 at 2:55 PM #

Joyce Stone

Left over pizza toppings make a great filling for a basic omelette! Scrape off the toppings and trash the crust.

07.09.2018 at 2:55 PM #

katiemorford

That’s a clever idea…though I do like a leftover crust 🙂

11.10.2018 at 12:21 PM #

frederick n kay

To much chat. All I want is the recipe

11.24.2018 at 7:50 AM #

Wyelene Coxwell

I like all recipes can’t to fix them

11.29.2018 at 5:26 PM #

Bong

BEST FOOD EVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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