Our new breakfast obsession: This brie & jam omelette

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Editor’s note: Contributor Georgia Freedman says the sweet, savory combination of cheese and jam is an unlikely, but genius mix of flavors. We also recently explored a variety of sweet and savory condiments to go with cheese. While Freedman suggests this dish for breakfast, we think it would also make a soothing dinner.


The first time a friend offered me a cream cheese and jam omelet I was, frankly, horrified by the idea. Cream cheese, jam, and eggs sounded like a Frankenstein-ish combination of foods. Surely, I thought, eggs should be cooked with savory ingredients, like cheddar and vegetables, not something as sweet as jam. And cream cheese belonged on bagels or in baked goods.

It only took me one bite to realize how wrong I’d been. The sweet-savory-creamy combination was a revelation, a mix of breakfast and dessert all at once. Paired with a sweet jam, the eggs and the creamy cheese transformed, reminding me of eggy flans or rich Dutch baby pancakes. The dish was like a deconstructed version of my favorite desserts, and it quickly became a favorite low-effort meal. Over the years, I’ve played with this unusual dish, offering it to my family as a hearty weekend breakfast or even a surprising treat for dinner. I’ve also begun to experiment with the form, trying out different cheese options. However I make it, it’s always delicious.

WHICH CHEESE GOES IN AN OMELET WITH JAM?

This dish works well with any relatively creamy, fairly mild cheese. Creamy ricotta works well in place of cream cheese, giving the meal a blintz-like flavor and a pillowy texture. I’m particularly fond of using rich Bellwether Farms ricotta, because it maintains its robust structure without becoming grainy. Just be careful to add it when the eggs are almost set; you don’t want to cook it too long, or it will melt and lose its lovely pillowy quality. I’ve also made this dish with Marin French Cheese’s flagship Petit Breakfast Brie. The extremely mild cheese, which was developed to serve at breakfast (in an era when eggs could be scarce), is a great stand-in for the cream cheese and offers a nice melty texture when cooked.

Marin French brie

But my favorite combination is actually jam and brie. A mild brie gives the dish a slightly salty, funky note that the original version doesn’t have, and this complexity takes the dish to another level. I also turn to Marin French Cheese for this version, because their brie (made near where I live, in California) is a sturdier cheese than most bries. Because it is not terribly gooey at room temperature, it can be sliced easily, and it melts at an even rate inside the eggs.

Brie & jam omelet

HOW TO COOK AN OMELET WITH JAM AND CHEESE

To keep your omelet from becoming too melty and gooey, you’ll want to have your eggs mostly cooked before you add your cheese and jam. Once your eggs are in the pan, use a spatula to push the edges around a bit, so that the liquid part of the eggs spill over the edges. You can even push the center of the eggs into ridges, breaking the bottom layer of eggs a bit so that the uncooked portion in the center hits the pan in some places. (These ridges will also form great pockets for your cheese and jam to sit in.) But after you’ve moved your eggs around a bit, let them sit and brown in the pan so that the outsides form a nice pancake-like structure that will be easy to fold over. Add the cheese and jam just before the eggs are done, particularly if you’re using soft cheese, and make sure to keep the fillings away from the edges—otherwise they will run into the pan fairly easily and leave you with a messy meal.

OMELET WITH BRIE AND JAM RECIPE

Makes 1 serving

  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1 grind fresh black pepper
  • 1/2 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 ½ oz brie, cut into ½” pieces
  • 2 teaspoons jam (apricot or strawberry preferred)

  1. In a small bowl, beat the eggs well with a fork. Season it with salt and pepper.
  2. Melt the butter in a non-stick omelet pan over medium heat. When the butter is frothy, pour the egg into the pan, and use a rubber spatula to push the edges of the egg into the center of the pan to create ridges throughout the pool of egg and to help the edges thicken up a bit.
  3. Turn the heat down to low. Scatter the cheese into the egg so that the pieces for a line going horizontally across the center of the egg. Spoon the jam over the cheese, distributing it evenly.
  4. Gently fold the top third of the egg over the filling, then fold the bottom third up over both. Cover the pan, and let the cheese begin to melt and the egg in the center begin to firm up, 30-60 seconds.
  5. Gently slide the omelet onto a plate. Serve on its own or with a salad of soft greens.

This article originally appeared on CheeseProfessor.com and was syndicated by MediaFeed.org.

More from MediaFeed:

Yes, you can pair vodka & cheese. Here’s how

Yes you can pair vodka & cheese. Here’s how

Editor’s note: We first heard about the combination of cheese and vodka from contributor Kelly Magyarics who wrote about pairing cheese and spirits for sister site, Alcohol Professor.


Ask the distillery team at Hangar 1 to explain what makes their vodka different from other brands, and you’ll quickly learn that their offerings are primarily distilled from grapes rather than grain. 

It’s this point of distinction that initially inspired the Alameda, California-based distillery’s marketing and sales manager Emily Webster to think about exploring a rather unusual notion: Vodka and cheese pairings. “I came to the company with a wine background,” Webster explains. “At an earlier point in my life, I studied to be a sommelier, so the idea of doing pairings with cheese was a natural for me.”

Emma K Morris / CheeseProfessor

Webster initially worked with several different cheese shops in the San Francisco Bay Area to develop pairings for private events and public tastings, eventually settling into a long-term cheese-lationship with Alameda’s own Farmstead Cheeses & Wines.

Farmstead’s Michael Albrant ultimately joined the Hangar 1 team as its full-time tasting room manager. Now, at monthly cheese pairing events, he leads guests through a revelatory round of sips and nibbles that lean not only into Hangar 1’s grape base, but the brand’s unique flavored vodkas, some of which feature additional oenophile appeal.

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In his most inspired matchmaking, Albrant combines cheese expertise with a lateral thinker’s knack for creativity. For instance, challenged to choose a pairing for Barely Buzzed, an award-winning cheddar from Utah’s Beehive Cheese Company, the obvious pairing—picking up on the creamery’s penchant for wordplay—might be Hangar 1 Honeycomb Vodka. But guided by his refined palate rather than easy gimmickry, Albrant took a cue from the cheese’s espresso- and lavender-rubbed rind. 

The bitterness of the coffee juxtaposed with the cheese’s slightly sweet paste triggered a taste-memory of anise-rich sambuca shots, traditionally garnished with espresso beans, which, in turn, brought Albrant to Hangar 1 Fennel Vodkawith its hint of herbal licorice flavor.

“The fennel vodka can feel a bit challenging for some people,” Albrant notes. “They’re not sure what to do with it. It’s often used at craft cocktail bars for Bloody Marys. But I’m particularly proud of this pairing because it brings out the complexity of the cheese and also helps you appreciate the vodka without any mixers.”

CheeseProfessor.com

And that Honeycomb Vodka? Albrant takes a cue from classic cheeseboard accompaniments and pairs it with mild Danish double crème Castello Double Crème Blue. Mellow spreadable blue and honey? Always a perfect match.

To tease out the flavor notes and distinctive mouthfeels of different vodkas when pairing them with cheese, it’s ideal to drink them straight, without water or tonic, and while slight chilling is fine, this is not the occasion to pour any celebratory bottles you’ve stored in the freezer. This is not the time for shots, either: Consider small snifters or whiskey glasses and, as at a wine tasting, be sure to draw the aroma of the vodka in through your nostrils before a drop passes your lips.

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Other pairings featured at recent Hangar 1 tastings have included France’s spectacularly rich Brebis Rousse D’Argental, an ewe’s milk brie with Hangar 1 Rosé Vodka, a pink-tinged blend of mainly spirit and a touch of wine (The rosé is added only after the vodka has been distilled). The apple acidity of the rosé and the vodka’s crisp dryness balance the buttery indulgence of the cheese.

And Lyonnaisse Lingot d’Argental with its bloomy rind and mushroomy forest-floor aroma proves an ideal companion for Hangar 1 Barrel-Aged Petite Sirah Vodka, not a wine blend but the result of casking vodka for three years, which imparts a cinnamon toast note and a golden color that’s utterly surprising in a vodka.

CheeseProfessor.com

Albrant lets the cheese be the star when he pairs Parmigiano Reggiano cousin Piave Vecchiowith straight vodka. The vodka provides a clean, bracing backdrop that lets surprising tropical fruit notes pop forward from the cheese and provides a satiny textural contrast to the crystal-flecked paste. 

For a home tasting, consider sampling several different brands of non-flavored vodka such as Hangar 1 Straight Vodka, a Double Gold 2021 New York International Spirits Competition winner, alongside a range of hard Italian cheeses. The clear spirit showcases qualities of these cheeses that traditional red wine pairings would certainly harmonize with, but also pull focus from.

“Sedona Market 013” by Italy in SF / CheeseProfessor

Other vodka and cheese combinations to begin exploring at home include sweet citrus flavored vodkas (lemon, lime, orange) in tandem with young goat cheeses; ginger vodka with lemon zest Wensleydale or white Stilton; and chili flavored vodkas balanced with Queso Blanco, feta or even a mild Fontina. As a general rule, avoid pairing vodkas with brawny aromatic cheeses (such as Taleggio or Roquefort), which tend to overwhelm them.

That said, craft distillers and cheese makers are nothing if not adventurous in their development of new varieties, so feel free to experiment at turning their singular creations into your own signature combinations.

This article originally appeared on CheeseProfessor.com and was syndicated by MediaFeed.org.

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Featured Image Credit: CheeseProfessor.com.

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