The JC100: L’Omelette Roulée

JC 100 Julie Child

I’m very proud to be taking part in the JC100: A 100-Day Celebration of Julia Child leading up to what would have been her 100th birthday on August 15th of this year. To say that I’m excited to be part of such a huge event would be a gross understatement. I’m ecstatic, and I’m honoured! The JC100 celebration includes 100 of Julia’s most cherished recipes, 100 bloggers cooking those recipes and posting about them on their blogs, 100 bookstores displaying her classic cookbooks, 100 restaurants taking part in Julia Child Restaurant Week (August 7 – 15), 100 amazing tributes, and 100 book readings  - all coming together to create 1,000,000 voices raised in tribute to 1 extraordinary culinary icon!

As one of the food bloggers chosen to take part, I’ll receive a special JC100 recipe every week to recreate and share. Each of these recipes has been handpicked by a panel of culinary luminaries including Judith Jones, Dorie Greenspan, Amanda Hesser, Thomas Keller, Danny Meyer, and Jacques Pepin.

I hope you’ll enjoy following along as I help to keep her legacy alive by passing on some of her most treasured recipes. We’re kicking off with Julia’s Omelette Roulée, a classic rolled omelette with an emphasis on technique.

Eggs in bowl

 

“The egg can be your best friend if you just give it the right break. ”

~Julia Child in “The French Chef, Elegance with Eggs”

There is an old proverb that says “there is more than one way to skin a cat”. I’ve never liked this saying (poor kitty) but I find it somewhat comforting to know that the cat didn’t always face such a gruesome fate. Earlier versions like “there are more ways of killing a cat than choking it with cream”, or “there are more ways of killing a cat than choking it with butter” suggest a much more pleasant way to go. Perhaps in 1855, the proverbial cat made its home in a lovely French château…

Regardless of the version, the meaning is the same. There is more than one way to get something done – and there is more than one way to make an omelette.

This is Julia’s…

L’Omelette Roulée {Rolled Omelette}

†Excerpted from Mastering the art of French Cooking by Julia Child. Copyright ©1961 by Alfred A. Knopf. Reprinted with permission from the publisher Alfred A. Knopf, a division of Random House, Inc.

For one omelette, 1 to 2 servings. Time:  Less than 30 seconds of cooking

  • 2 or 3 eggs
  • big pinch of salt
  • pinch of pepper
  • a mixing bowl
  • a table fork

Beat the eggs and seasonings in the mixing bowl for 20 to 30 seconds until the whites and yolks are just blended.

  • 1 tbsp butter
  • an omelette pan 7 inches in diameter at the bottom
  • a table fork

Place the butter in the pan and set over very high heat. As the butter melts, tilt the pan in all directions to film the sides. When you see that the foam has almost subsided in the pan and the butter is on the point of colouring (indicating it is hot enough), pour in the eggs. It is of utmost importance in this method that the butter be of the correct temperature.

Let the eggs settle in the pan for 2 or 3 seconds to form a film of coagulated egg in the bottom of the pan.

Grasp the handle of the pan with both hands, thumbs on top, and immediately begin jerking the pan vigorously and roughly toward you at an even, 20-degree angle over the heat, one jerk per second. It is the sharp pull of the pan toward you which throws the eggs against the far lip of the pan, then back over its bottom surface. You must have the courage to be rough or the eggs will not loosen themselves from the bottom of the pan. After several jerks, the eggs will begin to thicken. (A filling would go in at this point.)

Then increase the angle of the pan slightly, which will force the egg mass to roll over on itself with each jerk at the far lip of the pan. As soon as the omelette has shaped up, hold it in the angle of the pan to brown the bottom a pale golden colour, but only a second or two, for the eggs must not overcook. The centre of the omelette should remain soft and creamy. If the omelette has not formed neatly, push it with the back of your fork.

Turn the omelette onto the plate, rub the top with a bit of butter, and serve as soon as possible.

I was a little nervous getting started and could easily imagine myself jerking the pan and ending up with egg all over my face, but I followed Julia’s advice. I found the courage to be rough with it and it worked!  First try!

I’m sure the omelette was tasty right out of the pan but I wanted mine stuffed so I prepared a filling of sautéed mushrooms, shallots and garlic ( before I started cooking the eggs).

Sliced mushrooms in sautee pan

Next I smothered it with cheesy, yummy Mornay sauce (also prepared beforehand), and then I finished it with mushroom slices and a sprinkle of parsley.

Rolled Omelette with mornay and mushrooms

Omelette Fermière Farcie Aux Champignons {Mushroom Stuffed Omelet}

Rolled omelette with sautéed mushrooms, mornay sauce and a sprinkle of parsley

Yes, there is more than one way to make an omelette but Julia’s method yielded the most tender eggs I’ve ever tasted.  This simple recipe combined with a practiced, professional technique will help you create a dish that is both elegant and delicious.

Links to more JC100 Rolled Omelette Posts:

The Epi-log on Epicurious.com: Julia Child's Rolled Omelette
Baked by Rachel: Rolled Omelette - Julia Child
La Cuisine d' Hélène: Omelette Roulée - Julia Child (JC100)
Noshing with the Nolands: Julia Child's L'Omelette Roulee

 

 

†DISCLOSURE: This post includes an Amazon affiliate link for Mastering the Art of French Cooking. I receive a tiny commission on any sales it may generate.

18 Comments

  1. Hello Laura,
    Thanks for the L’Omelette Roulee recipe.
    I’ll create one for sure, my kids are gonna like it :)
    If you don’t mind, can I submit your L’Omelette Roulee photo in http://www.foodporn.net ?
    It’s a food photography site full of all DIY food pictures from members around the world. Or perhaps you’d like to submit by yourself? Let me know when you did, so I can share it.

    Reply
    • Hi Hillary,
      I would be very flattered (and grateful) to have you submit my photo in Food Porn! Thanks very much,
      Laura

      PS – Hope the kids enjoy the omelettes :-)

      Reply
  2. Nicely done, thanks for the add!!!

    Reply
    • Thanks Tara – its nice to be able to share the celebration :-)

      Reply
  3. Omelettes! Mornay sauce! MASTERING THE ART OF FRENCH COOKING was the first serious cookbook I ever read, in high school… and the first thing I ever made from it was an omelette. I haven’t made Mornay Sauce in years – I’d rather spend my calories on Béarnaise, if I’m going to go in that direction – but I still have great great affection for this recipe. It evokes a time when French cooking still seemed almost impossibly remote and exotic, and therefore irresistible. Thanks for the post. Ken

    Reply
    • Hi Ken,
      A thick juicy rib-eye with a side of Béarnaise sauce is the stuff dreams are made of – at least mine are. It’s right up there with spring asparagus smothered in hollandaise. There’s a reason why the mother sauces and their variations are such classics! Now if I only I didn’t have to eat salad for the rest of the week to compensate… :-)
      Laura

      Reply
  4. Congratulations for being chosen. I’d love to watch the cooking, and taste the dishes! Thank you so much for sharing th recipes! Yum!

    Reply
    • Thanks Charlene! Nice to see you!
      I’m still not sure why I was invited, but I’m grateful for it all the same :-)

      Reply
  5. That was excellent. I’ve never seen Julia Child, let alone watched her cook. She’s really down to earth, isn’t she? As if it’s just you and her in her kitchen. Thanks Laura for this article, and for the suggestion of cheesy sauce and mushrooms as a topping.

    Reply
    • Thanks Trish! I think that’s why she was so popular, and although you don’t see it in this clip, she also had a wicked sense of humour.

      Hope you have a Happy Mother’s Day :-)

      Reply
  6. Great post, Laura! Your omelette looks delicious! It’s nice to join you and many other bloggers in this tribute to Julia Child!

    Reply
    • Thanks Jane! She was a great lady and I’m excited to be a part of this, but I’m also a little bit nervous too. I’m not sure what I’ll do if one of the weekly recipes is the formidable pate de canard en croute. My duck boning skills are non-existent :-)

      Reply
  7. What a great twist on a “Traditional Omelette”- Julia would be proud! The mushrooms laid out on top of the omelette look absolutely beautiful too!! Thanks for sharing this wonderful post…

    -Shannon

    Reply
  8. Elegant and Delicious looking… Who gets to eat all these dishes you make?

    Reply
    • Thanks Elizabeth! We ate the Mousseline au Chocolat with my parents to celebrate their 55th wedding anniversary, but this one was all mine. I must say I felt very French and fancy sitting down to dine on my Omelette Roulee :-)

      Reply
  9. A lot of effort has been put into this omelette and I am sure it tastes delicious and fluffy :)

    Reply
    • Hi Paula, Thanks so much for your comment. The omelette was very quick and easy to make, but I did put some extra effort into the garnish and sauce. I think it was worth it :-)

      Reply

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