Sunday, July 25, 2010
I was in Canada visiting family during the month of July. I was privileged to see my niece have her first baby, a beautiful daughter named Willow and of course to spend much needed time with both of my parents. During the trip I stayed at one of my sister's homes and call it jet-lag, climate change or just life, wouldn't you know it I caught a bad cold on my last day in Canada. And by the time my plane landed in LA, I was a hacking, sneezing, coughing mess. And trust me, I did not feel like cooking.
Three days later, I was feeling a bit stronger and decided to make myself a special breakfast. Because I had been traveling I had not bought any groceries for two weeks and had to see what I could put together from the fridge contents and the presents I had received from Canada.
Inside the fridge I found eggs, serrano peppers, garlic, apple-wood bacon, and goat cheese. I also had a bottle of pickled gardenia mix (canned cauliflower, red peppers, and carrots) that my niece had canned this year and some onion stuffed olives from Olive-It International (www.olivelovers.com ).
I fried up the bacon first, and the apple-wood smoked hickory aroma immediately woke up my dog who became attached to my leg while I was cooking. I laid the bacon strips out to drain the oil off them and diced the gardenia mix, garlic, peppers, and olives.
After adding the bacon strips to the mixture I realized that it reminded me of a sandwich I had in New Orleans called a muffaletta. It originated in the French Quarter and it is made with good crusty bread and an olive salad. The rest of it is ham and cheese with some salami and pepperoni tossed in. I decided to make a Muffaletta Omelette or at least my version of one.
I quickly mixed up my egg mixture (2 eggs, 2 tablespoon of milk, a pinch of black pepper, and sweet basil). I did not add any salt because my muffaletta mix had salt from the bacon, gardenia mix and the olives. I placed my pan on medium heat with a light coating of olive oil. When it warmed I poured my egg mixture into the pan. As it started to set I poured my muffaletta mixture into the middle third of the pan, added the goat cheese and folded the omelette over it. As the egg mixture cooked I kept folding it over until I lifted it out of the pan. I placed it on my plate and garnished with the remaining olive mixture and goat cheese.
I then took a large croissant, slice it open, decorated it with romaine lettuce and put my Muffaleta Omelette on top and served it sandwich style.
The smoky hickory taste of the bacon, the delicate creamy goat cheese and the salty brine of the olive gardenia mix was heavenly. The garlic and the sweet basil layers were noted but not overpowering. I would definitely make this for a Sunday brunch with guests. You should try it out and let me know how you like it. My word of caution again would be to not add any salt to your egg mixture before cooking - the muffaletta mix will have all the salt you need. And if you feel compassionate, give a tiny piece of bacon to the dog...
* 2 eggs
* 2 Tbsp. whole milk
* 1 serrano pepper (you can substitute with ¼ cup green pepper if you don’t like the heat or remove the seeds for less heat)
* 2 strips of apple wood bacon crisply fried
* 2 oz goat cheese
* ¼ cup gardenia mix (mine was canned by my niece but you can substitute with Bick’s® Hot Mixed Pickles (http://www.bicks.ca/en/products_sub.aspx?pid=92)
* 4 garlic stuffed olives, chopped ( I used Olive-It ‘s Garlic Stuffed Olives, http://www.olivelovers.ca/products/stuffed-olives/garlic )
* ¼ teaspoon sweet basil, dried not fresh
* Salt and ground black pepper, to taste
* 2 Tbsp clarified butter or whole butter
1. Fry up the bacon first, lay the bacon strips out to drain the oil off them and crumple them up in a bowl.
2. To create the muffaletta mix, chop the gardenia mix, serrano pepper, and garlic stuffed olives and add them to the bacon and mix them together.
3. In another bowl, mix up the egg mixture with your dried spices (the 2 eggs, 2 tablespoon of milk, a pinch of black pepper, and sweet basil). I did not add any salt to mine because my muffaletta mix had salt from the bacon, gardenia mix and the olives.
4. Heat a heavy-bottomed nonstick sauté pan over medium-low heat. Add the butter and let it melt.
5. When the butter in the pan is hot enough to make a drop of water hiss, pour in the eggs. Let the eggs cook for up to a minute or until the bottom starts to set.
6. With a heat-resistant rubber spatula, gently push one edge of the egg into the center of the pan, while tilting the pan to allow the still liquid egg to flow in underneath.
7. Pour the muffaletta mixture into the middle third of the pan, add the goat cheese and fold the omelette over it.
8. As the egg mixture cooks keep folding it over until it is ready to be lifted it out of the pan.
9. Gently transfer the finished omelette to a plate. Garnish with the remainder of the chopped muffaletta mix and goat cheese if desired.
10. Take a large croissant, slice it open, decorate it with romaine lettuce and put the Muffaletta Omelette on top and serve it sandwich style immediately.
Dede Blunt (The Blunt Instrument)