NOTE: This Post Contains Spoilers From A Breath of Snow And Ashes
This omelette recipe is inspired by A Breath of Snow and Ashes, the sixth novel in the Outlander series by Diana Gabaldon.
When I create a recipe that's inspired by an item in a book, I often find myself asking (and trying to answer) how the item was really made, and which ingredients to use. Sometimes this means I have to get creative to fill in the blanks that were left out by the author. Ms. Gabaldon, however, is a vivid writer who includes every tiny detail - it's a big reason that she's one of my favorite authors. Her alluring prose describes the meals in her books in mouth-watering detail, giving me a very specific goal when developing a recipe based on her writing.
For example, this is the omelette description that inspired this recipe:
"I abandoned Ian and Rolls to the juggernaut of Mrs. Bug's benevolence-let Ian try telling her he didn't want bread and milk-and sat down to my own belated supper: a hot, fresh omelette, featuring not only cheese, but bits of salty bacon, asparagus, and wild mushrooms, flavored with spring onions."
Gabaldon's words provide a clear picture of the omelette I set out to make, and the flavor combination sounds delicious. The only aspects I had to determine were the type of omelette (French, country, etc.) and the type of cheese to use. To choose the former, I watched several old BBC cooking shows about omelette cooking in France. One stood out: a video of an old woman cooking a rustic omelette quickly in plenty of hot butter. This produced a fluffy, lightly filled omelette with brown tasty bits on the outside, perfect for cooking over an open flame without the aid of modern Teflon coating.
For the cheese, I knew it had to be fresh and soft as opposed to a hard aged cheese which would generally be used for quick picnic lunches and traveling (not for a home cooked supper). I selected soft goat cheese as it's widely available in supermarkets. Soft sheep cheese would also be a good choice, as either could potentially be found on an 18th century North Carolina farmstead. With my ingredients selected, I was ready to make an omelette that could bring Mrs. Bug back to life.
- 3 large eggs
- 3 tablespoons milk
- Kosher salt
- 1/4 cup bacon, chopped
- 1/3 cup mushrooms, sliced (any type is fine)
- 1/3 cup blanched asparagus, chopped
- 1/4 cup goat cheese
- 1/4 cup finely sliced green onion greens
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- Black pepper
Mix eggs, milk, and salt in a medium bowl until frothy. Let it sit while getting ready for other ingredients.
Fry bacon in a 10-inch non stick skilled over medium-high heat until crispy. Transfer to a paper towel lined plate and set aside. Reduce heat to medium and add the mushrooms, and fry until slightly golden. Add the chopped asparagus to the pan and cook for 2 more minutes. Combine all the ingredients on the paper towel lined plate. Return the pan to medium heat.
Melt 3 tablespoons butter in skillet and cook until brown and slightly frothy. Re-whisk eggs and pour into the hot skillet. Shake the pan to jostle the eggs and with a spatula push the edges towards the middle to spread around the uncooked egg. Tilt pan to spread uncooked eggs, using a spatula to push edges towards the center until eggs are nearly set. Sprinkle cooked ingredients evenly over the omelette and crumble goat cheese on top. Remove from heat, cover, and let sit for several minutes. Carefully fold the omelette in half with a spatula and slide onto a plate, and garnish with the sliced green onions. Serve with plenty of hot buttered toast.