THE COUNTRY JALAPEÑO OMELET
The first time I ate a jalapeño pepper was when I was about 16 years old. The friends I had dinner with warned me not to eat one raw, but I ignored their advice and did it just to prove I could handle the heat which, in turn, wound up handling me instead. I made the classical mistake of eating the whole thing raw, and my mouth paid the price of that erstwhile bit of foolishness. The next popular folly I pursued to rid myself of the pain was to run my mouth under the kitchen sink faucet forever while my audience sat and laughed their fool heads off..
My daughter, who unfortunately takes after me, did the same thing when she was 16. Even though I tried to stop her (she insists I dared her to eat it, to my chagrin), I watched in horror as she swallowed an entire pod without even chewing it. We were eating dinner at an El Pollo Loco Restaurant in Las Vegas and had no immediate recourse for a remedy. My wife remembered what happened that day and told me Stephanie’s eyes got watery while she started to choke followed by hacking coughing spasms that wouldn’t stop. Phew!
My El Pollo Loco Dare:
“My Dad was always daring us kids to do things we probably wouldn’t have pursued otherwise, So, one day while sitting in a El Pollo Loco restaurant in Las Vegas, Nevada with my parents, my Dad says “I betcha you can’t eat a whole jalapeño raw”. Since I was just as stubborn as he was when it came to backing down from a challenge, I decided it might be fun and entertaining to take him up on it. Without thinking of the consequences, I went ahead and popped that diabolical jalapeño in my mouth. The first few seconds were not too bad, but that moment of bliss didn’t last long. Before I knew it, the fiery aftertaste, if that is what you call it, got so intense that I had trouble breathing. It was at this point that I seriously regretted my fractured decision and found out that water didn’t cure my ailment or offer any relief at all! I don’t remember much after that but eventually the pain subsided. So, all I can say now is that the next time someone dares me to do something weird or says ‘I bet you won’t or can’t do this or that’, I’ll just look them right in the eye and say no! Hopefully!”
First Person Commentary by my daughter,Stephanie Black
Well, if you think I learned my lesson way back then, think again. I just made my latest omelet creation with raw jalapeños (sans the seeds) and forgot to wash my hands. Yep! You guessed it! I rubbed my eyes and, voila!
I am just now recovering from repeated face washings and eye drop insertions, and I couldn’t even open my eyes for 15 to 20 minutes afterwards. So much the price for loving the flavor of those little ‘beasties’.
Omelet Flavor And Cooking Technique
My favorite breakfast at The Waffle House is the Fiesta Omelet which contains sliced jalapeños, and the cook will add extra ones if you ask. If you have that dish with their delectable hash brown potatoes and a side of toast with butter and jelly, it is a full meal in itself.
In past episodes, I have always managed to eat way too much at one sitting, because I also included an order of grits and 2 sausage patties for good measure. With a small glass of orange juice thrust into the mix, the calorie count hit the scale at around 1800. Since I now feel bloated after exploits like that, I don’t plan on doing that anymore. Still, I order that particular omelet each time I go there, even if nothing else gets added to the meal.
So, since I have chosen to duplicate that favorite repast of mine, my goal is to start creating similar omelets with the same amount of flavor. Until I made the one described in this blog, most of them have tasted sort of bland. I would take 2 whisked eggs, add cheddar cheese along with some seasonings, and that was it. However, the stated goal was to teach myself the correct procedures of duplicating the Fiesta Omelette itself without creating a big mess while doing so.
For simplicity and safety, I first take a small round saucepan with a non-stick surface about 8″ in diameter. Then I coat the bottom with a heavy dab of real butter and set the temperature on the cooktop one notch above the low setting. Then I whisk the eggs and pour them into the warm pan sans any accompaniments.
Next I add shredded cheese on top of one half side of the eggs. Next I sprinkle on the remaining ingredients, again on top of the cheese. The other half is left completely empty except for the bare exposed part of the eggs. As it cooks, the outer edges of the omelet is your indicator. There is no flipping at this point and patience is required. The low setting lets it cook perfectly through with no browning on the underside.
As the bare side begins to firm up, I gently start lifting the edges with a small spatula to free up any part of the omelet that might be sticking to the pan. Then I take a big wide spatula and insert it under the bare side of the eggs and start my folding process. To keep everything positioned properly, I gently shake the spatula to work it under the eggs and flip it so that the fold matches the other side. Then I tilt the saucepan and slide the finished omelet onto the plate with the round side pointed towards the outside edge. This leaves room for added breakfast items like a sauce, hash browns, or even grits if you prefer.
Be sure to wash your hands with detergent or hand soap after you finish handling the jalapeños. Simply rinsing your hands with water does not work. The capsaicin chemicals that infuse the Pepper with heat do not mix with water. You might want to include a glass of milk with your meal to temper the burning on your tongue if you are not accustomed to spicy foods like this.
The Country Jalapeño Omelet
- 3 eggs (whisked_or mixed in blender for fluffy texture)
- 1/8 cup of chopped Feta Cheese
- 1 sliced jalapeño (remove the seeds if you wish for less heat)
- 1/4 cup of diced fresh tomatoes
- 1 sprig green onions diced (sauteed only a bit)
- Pinch of salt
- 1/2 medium onion chopped, sautéed
- 1/4 cup of diced ham
- 1/8 cup of shredded Cheddar Cheese (in place of Feta Cheese)
- Diced sauteed mushrooms (flavor additive)
- Start heating saucepan on second lowest setting on cook top
- Slather generous dab of butter over the entire bottom and sides
- Whisk 3-eggs in bowl (or mix in blender), and pour into pan
- Add the shredded cheese (if this option is chosen) on one half of the egg mixture
- Add the remaining ingredients on top of the cheese (see picture above}
- Wait patiently for the bare side to firm up
- Start prodding the edges so that the whole omelet slides around freely in the saucepan
- The moment the bare eggs side firms up, slide spatula underneath
- Gently wiggle it until it reaches the center
- Lift the whole (bare) half side slowly and fold over until it matches the filled other side of the omelet
- Slide onto dish so that the round side matches curvature of plate.
The underside of the omelet should be a nice even yellow color with no brown spots. Keep in mind that eggs continue to cook after you remove them from the pan. Don’t worry about melting cheese squirting out the sides. It will firm up within a minute or so.
If you add milk to the eggs before whisking, expect the omelet to brown on the underside and stick to the pan. It will then fall apart when you lift it with the spatula.
For an added flavor topping, finish off your creation with some homemade salsa.
The only easily obtainable store-bought brand of salsa that I like is Herdez Salsa because it doesn’t have that vinegary preservative taste that the other identifiable brands have.
I am requesting that my readers click on the links provided and download a sample read of each book and give a review on Amazon. You will have free access to the first four chapters of each book. My hope is that you will like the story lines enough to obtain either an eBook version or a paperback copy that you can put on your bookshelf as a masterpiece when you are done. FATE STALKS A HERO I: RESURGENCE, FATE STALKS A HERO II:THE FIJI FULCRUM, and THE SAGA OF HERACLES PENOIT. I will be giving excerpts on these works in upcoming blogs to familiarize you the reader with exciting details about the contents of each one. Thank you!