There is nothing like a vacation to give you a new perspective and a long needed rest. I visited Nashville and had my fill of barbeque then off to Auburn Alabama to visit family all the time thinking of new ideas and dishes. Keeping with my present theme of at alternative cooking methods, I wanted to use my new Cuisinart Steam Oven to do an omelette. The advantage of steaming is that the eggs puff up giving an unique texture plus I can create an interesting shape. For my toppings I wanted to use local fresh ingredients, and decided on shrimps and mushrooms, a common pizza combination I remember from Canada. If you don't have a steam oven you can use a wok steamer or any other steamer equipment you have. Keeping with my northwest theme, I wanted to use sea beans as a garnish. If you can not find this interesting vegetable you could always substitute chives or green onions. I also made some herb oil to give a little extra touch of flavor or add some chopped fresh herbs. You could use fresh or dried reconstituted mushrooms and play with the presentation making it something special. This is a surprisingly simple dish that looks fantastic. Remember the omelette can be cut into different shapes to give you many different serving and plating options.
3-4 small cremini mushrooms
1/2 pound small shrimp
blanched sea beans
your favorite herb oil plus any fresh chopped herbs
salt and pepper for seasoning
Pre-heat a skillet on medium and slice the mushrooms into 1/8 inch slices. Add some oil to cover the bottom of the hot pan and add the mushrooms in a single layer. Season and cook until golden brown on the first side then the other. Peel and devein the shrimp, season and stir fry in hot oil then reserve. Blanch the sea beans in unsalted water and reserve.
Select the container(s) you want to steam the omelette with and cut a piece of parchment to fit. Fit the parchment paper into the container and beat 3 eggs in a bowl, season with salt and pepper and pour into the container. Steam for 6 to 8 minutes or until done. Unmold and trim omelette and plate. Arrange shrimp, mushrooms and sea beans on the top of the omelette and drizzle with herb oil (directions below). Repeat for second omelette; serves two.
Herb oil: add fresh herbs and extra virgin olive oil and process. Strain oil through fine mesh or cheese cloth.
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How does a good chef think? What is the creative process a
chef uses to come up with new and exciting dishes? What do I need to know to enable that creative process? These are the questions I want to explore in this series of articles. As a chef and an avid cookbook collector I am drawn towards
ideas and techniques of cooking rather than just a collection of recipes. I believe to grow as a chef, I need to continually learn and hone new techniques along with perfecting each technique I use every day. Whenever I go to a restaurant, whether fine dining, neighborhood pub, avant garde, or even fast food, I continually ask myself how can I do this better, what works and more important, what doesn’t? Feel free to send me comments, ask questions. Together, we can explore and make creative cuisine.
Spending almost thirty years in the computing field, I was able to travel experiencing a wide variety of tremendous cuisine. First I became a foodie, and when the opportunity arose, I was able to attend culinary school following my passion. I work as a part-time private chef and volunteer time at the community café in North Bend Oregon providing affordable meals in a restaurant setting to my community.