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023: Fluffy Omelette: Breakfast and Memories

Updated: Apr 3, 2022

Today’s breakfast was an absolutely delicious, perfectly golden-brown fluffy omelette, made by me! For a moment, the mountains of dishes in the sink, the damp clothes waiting to be dried in the washing machine, and the landmine of tiny toys on the floor, disappeared. I bit into the crisped garlic chips, savoured the slightly sweet caramelised onions with the complementary sharp hints of manchego cheese, relished the spongy Spanish tortilla texture, and forgot about the chaos that clings to our mornings.

This omelette transported me to the many many kitchens I have been pampered in. To the many many home cooks who poured their love into humble eggs and fed me. My Coorgi neighbour Ashlesha’s mother was the first person that I saw crack an egg when I was ten. I grew up in a Marwari kitchen and had absolutely no exposure to eggs. She tapped the egg gently on the edge of the pan, and without a moment's hesitation, deftly poured out it's slimy contents into the hot oil. I was mesmerised!

My college mate Huma’s mother made us the most delicious sunny-side up eggs for breakfast. I stared aghast as her mother put half a stick of butter into the pan. My mother would always measure out oil with a teaspoon, since the day of my father’s cardiac surgery, and I had grown up eating food with very minimal oil. And here was Huma’s mother shallow-frying eggs in what seemed to me like a vat of fat. But what a divine difference that fat made. The eggs were transformed into crisp, fried, crunchy goodness.

This morning, I let the mint and coriander (cilantro) leaves wilt in olive oil, just as my mother-in-law does. I added a dash of milk to the egg batter, a tip my friend Britt had shown me in her sun-lit Brooklyn kitchen, and whisked the yolk and whites till tiny frothy bubbles greeted me. The omelette rose up slowly in the covered pan, and as I bit into its bronzed deliciousness, there was a fleeting respite from the domestic storm.

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