Thursday, May 27, 2010

Tomato and Cheese Omelette

Cheese and egg are among my favorite foods. They are both delicious on their own. A slice of cheese, especially Cheddar or Edam, can transform a rather simple bread roll or even a Filipino “pandesal”, into a wonderful breakfast or snack meal for me. A soft boiled egg on the other hand, sprinkled with just a little sea salt, is already a complete definition of comfort food to me. So, combining the two, plus some select veggies like tomato, to create an omelette, is a regular fare for me. Aside from “tortang alimasag” and “tortang talong”, cheese omelette is a simple dish I always do.

Cheese refers to the diverse group of milk-based food produced by coagulating the milk protein casein. The milk is basically acidified and addition of the enzyme rennet causes coagulation. The solids are then separated and pressed into final form. Cheese consists of proteins and fat from milk, usually from cows, buffalo, goats or sheep. It is produced throughout the world in a wide range of flavors, textures and forms. Cheese is valued for its portability, long life and high content of fat, protein, calcium and phosphorus.

An omelette or omelet is a quick dish made from beaten eggs cooked in a frying pan folded around or over filling. Since this is a tomato and cheese omelette, the fillings composed of chopped fresh tomato and grated Cheddar cheese. In the Philippines, the term for omelette is “torta” and it is generally served for breakfast. There are many other types of fillings such as onions, garlic, corned beef, potatoes, bell peppers, eggplant, crab meat, minced pork or beef and chopped or shredded leftover meats or combination thereof. It is eaten by itself or served with fried rice or “sinangag” like adobo garlic fried rice and dried fish fried rice.

To cook the dish, the following few ingredients are required: 3 medium eggs, 3 tbsp grated Cheddar cheese, 1 medium tomato, finely diced, 1 tbsp shallot leaves or chives, minced, ¼ tsp salt or to taste, a dash of ground pepper and about 1 tbsp butter or vegetable oil.

In a bowl, combine the eggs, salt and ground pepper. Beat the eggs with fork or wire whisk until yolks and whites are well mixed and mixture is slightly fluffy. Set aside.

In a non-stick pan or skillet, heat about 1 tbsp butter or vegetable oil over medium flame. Tilt the skillet to coat the bottom with the melted butter or hot oil. Pour the beaten eggs and quickly cook while intermittently sliding skillet back and forth to spread the egg over the bottom of the skillet as they thicken. Add the shallot, cheese and tomato on one half side of the omelette.

Gently fold the other half to cover the fillings. Continue cooking for several minutes slightly pressing the edge to seal it off.

If you like, you can carefully flip the omelette over and continue cooking the other side for even doneness of the eggs like what I did. If you are not sure you can do it, just skip this step.

Take the skillet off the heat and slide the omelette onto a serving plate. You can garnish it with some parsley or slices of tomato or cucumber but I did not bother. The omelette is already gorgeous by itself. :-)

Serve it immediately with steamed rice or better yet “yang chow fried rice” which is my son’s favorite. Yummy! c“,)

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