- Food and Cooking
Eating Clean: The art of the Egg White Omelet
Egg Whites are Nutritious, High in Protein, and Fat Free
The egg is a beautiful thing. Compact, lovely to look at and nutritious. According to the latest information, an egg a day is not going to raise your cholesterol level in any perceptible manner and the other benefits far outweigh the disadvantages. That's one egg. It's very difficult to make an omelet out of one egg. And if you are looking for a generous helping of protein without all of the cholesterol and fat, then forget about it. With three or four egg whites, you can get an ample supply of breakfast protein (12-16 grams) along with selenium (a trace mineral) and riboflavin (B2). Egg whites are about the only source of fat free protein and taste great if lightly seasoned, so they are the perfect vehicle for at least half of the veggies that you should be eating every day.
The Perfect Pan
With the perfect pan, and a nice nonstick spatula, little skill is required when it comes to making the perfect egg white omelet. I have found that a 10" nonstick skillet with an even cooking and heating surface is your best bet. A larger skillet will make the omelet too thin and a smaller one will make it difficult to the egg cook evenly. I am proprietary when it comes to my omelet pan. I alone use it and use it only for making omelets and pancakes. That way I don't have to worry about anyone ruining the perfect cooking surface. If it is nonstick and kept in good condition, it will last a long time and only require a dusting of olive oil spray. The spatula is actually quite important as well. Too large and you won't be able to manipulate and maneuver it in the pan. Too small and you won't be able to remove the final glorious product.Mine is 4" wide and 5" at its' longest point.
Feta, mushroom and spinach
Feta, kalamata olive, sundried tomato
and red onion
Monterey Jack, red onion, mushroom
Monterey Jack, tomato, avocado, and
Goat cheese, asparagus, red onion and
Monterey Jack, red, yellow and orange
Peppers with red onion
How to make a beautiful and tasty Egg White Omelet
First, you will need to decide how you want to fill your omelet. Keeping in mind the clean eating theme, I use only a very small amount of cheese. In the omelet in my tutorial, I am using grated Monterey Jack because it melts easily and takes only a quarter of a cup to provide the lovely creamy texture needed to bind the other ingredients. This quantity has 110 calories and 9 grams of fat. Feta is also a cheese that provides great texture with wonderful flavor. When it comes to veggies, the door is wide open. Because the vegetables are sauteed prior to assembling the omelet, you will probably want to choose vegetables that complement each other and cook in approximately the same amount of time so that you will only need one pan to saute them in. I suggest one and a half cups of raw vegetables per omelet (unless you are using spinach, in which case you will want three cups as it really cooks down).
Vegetables and cheese chosen (you do not have to use cheese in order for the omelet to be delicious), the next step will be to grate the cheese (1/4 c. per omelet) and chop and saute the veggies until they are soft but not limp and then set them aside. You can use either egg whites from a carton or fresh egg whites which will need to be separated. I separate them by hand, but there are lots of little gadgets out there to help you with that if you are so inclined. Once the eggs are separated (3-4 egg whites per omelet), whisk them, then pour them into a pan which has been sprayed with oil and heated to between medium and medium high. Pour them in and watch carefully. As the sides begin to cook, use your spatula to lift the sides and maneuver the egg white from the middle to underneath so that the omelet can cook evenly. When the surface area is still glossy but almost cooked, sprinkle a tad of salt and pepper and whatever spice (I like red pepper flakes, oregano or thyme) and then sprinkle the grated cheese on top. Cover for about 30 seconds, then uncover and slide the cooked veggies onto one half of the omelet surface. Because every pan is different, and there is an enormous difference between using a gas stove and an electric stove, there is no magic number when it comes to time. You will have to assess the 'doneness' of your omelet. I like to see just a bit of brown on the underside. Using your spatula, gently fold the other half over the veggie side, and then slide onto a waiting plate. Voila! A healthy and tasty egg white omelet.