Cheese Omelet

Cheese Omelet

The filling and folding are easy, and in 15 minutes you’ve got a whole meal.
TIME 15 minutes
MAKES 2 servings
4 eggs
2 tablespoons milk or cream, optional
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons plus1 teaspoon butter
½ cup grated cheddar cheese


Method
1 Crack the eggs on a flat, hard surface and open them into a medium bowl. Add the milk if you’re using it, whisk until the yolks and whites are just combined, and sprinkle with some salt and pepper.

2 Put the 2 tablespoons butter into a medium skillet, preferably nonstick, over medium-high heat. When it has melted, swirl it around the pan until the bottom is coated and the foaming stops.

3 Pour the egg mixture into the pan and cook, undisturbed, for about 30 seconds, then use a wooden spoon or rubber spatula to gently push the outer edges of the eggs toward the center. As you do this, tip the pan to allow the uncooked eggs in the center to spread into the gaps and cook. Continue this process until the omelet is mostly set around the edges but still quite runny in the center, a total of about 3 minutes (if you like well-done eggs, cook until the center firms up, another 1 or 2 minutes).

4 Lower the heat to medium and sprinkle the cheese over the eggs, mostly toward the center. To fold the omelet, see the photos. If the eggs still look too wet inside after folding, continue to cook just until the eggs are no longer runny. Slide the omelet out of the pan and onto a plate, smear the remaining 1 teaspoon butter over the top (it will melt), cut in half crosswise, and serve.



Variations
  • 8 Other Fillings
1 Any cheese that will soften a bit, about ½ cup

2 Cooked and chopped mushrooms, onion, spinach, or simply cooked leftover vegetables, ½ to 1 cup

3 Diced ripe tomatoes, drained dry, about ½ cup

4 Cottage or goat cheese (mixed with chopped fresh herbs if you like), about ½ cup

5 Chopped ham, crisp-cooked bacon, sausage meat, or other chopped meat, about ½ cup

6 Herbs: 1 teaspoon chopped fresh stronger herbs like oregano, tarragon, or thyme or 1 tablespoon milder ones like parsley, chervil, basil, or mint

7 Cooked seafood, like shrimp, scallops, lobster, or crabmeat, shredded or chopped, 1 cup

8 Chopped red bell pepper, about ½ cup

Tips
  • A nonstick (or well-seasoned cast-iron) pan prevents the eggs from sticking.
  • To make an omelet for one, use half of each ingredient and cook in a small (6- to 8-inch) skillet. For a thinner omelet, use a large (12-inch) skillet.
  • You don’t want to brown the eggs, but they need to set up quickly, so make sure the pan is good and hot when they go in. If the fat starts to “spit,” lower the heat a bit.
  • Resist the temptation to overstuff the omelet or you’ll have trouble folding and getting it out of the pan. For 4 eggs, use no more than 1 cup of filling.

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