Recipe: How to Make Perfect French Omelets

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©2007 Carl Tremblay Photography

There is a scene in Gabrielle Hamilton’s autobiography, Bread Bones and Butter, when her sister informs her that she is having chef Andre Soltner over for lunch and she plans on serving him an omelet. Gabrielle tries to stop her. Didn’t she know who Soltner was? This was a man who judged all chefs on their ability to create “the perfect ovoid omelette with tiny curds so finely pored that it resembles a baby’s butt.” And that, is not an easy feat.

I can’t tell you the number of times I have set out to make an omelet and ended up with scrambled eggs. Thanks to Christopher Kimball of America’s Test Kitchen, I may give it another go. In his recent book The Science of Good Cooking, he not only offers recipes, he explains why they work. So for an omelet, he says: Fat is your friend. Opt for 2 eggs and 1 yolk per serving. Don’t whisk. Give it no more than 80 strokes with a fork (yes, he counted) or the proteins will toughen up. Freeze your butter before adding it to the eggs. And finally, cook it low and slow. His omelet pan spends more time off the heat than on the burner. Listen to his conversation with Evan below and keep reading for his recipe for the Perfect Omelet.