I had tears in my eyes when MEPs linked hands and sang Auld Lang Syne after passing the Brexit deal and whatever your stance on the UK exiting Europe, I think we can all agree that Nigel Farage behaved like an immature, ill-mannered lout. If we can’t, some of us are reading the wrong blog. The man is totally lacking in grace.
Farage has of course been pelted with eggs on the campaign trail before now but the expression “you can’t make an omelette without breaking eggs” is variously attributed to one or another Frenchman: the revolutionary Maximilien Robespierre, Royalist Francois de Charette or Napoleon Bonaparte. I wasn’t aware of its supposed Gallic origins and on this day of all days, it gave me a wry smile. Wiktionary translates its meaning thus: “In order to achieve something, it is inevitable and necessary that some mistakes are made or some sacrifices must occur.” Make of that what you will.
Today’s recipe owes something to Spain, something to Greece and quite a lot to my need for something quick but tasty for supper after a difficult week. Let’s call it a Euro Omelette. It works for brunch, lunch or supper. Meat eaters may like to use nuggets of the soft, spicy Italian salumi, nduja, in place of the feta cheese.
2 tbsp extra virgin rapeseed oil (or olive oil of European origin)
1 red onion
200g waxy potatoes, unpeeled
1/2 tspn hot smoked paprika
1 red pepper
1 green pepper
1 medium-hot chilli
5 eggs, beaten
70g feta cheese, cubed
Salt and pepper
A handful of roughly chopped fresh coriander
Peel and top and tail the onions, halve them lengthways and cut into thin slices. Cut the potatoes into 1.5 cm dice. De-seed the peppers and cut into 2cm dice. Beat the eggs and chop the coriander.
Heat 2 tbsp of oil in a deep frying pan and cook the onions, sprinkled with a little salt, until softened. Add the potato cubes and paprika and continue to cook on a low to medium heat, stirring from time to time, until three-quarters cooked, about eight minutes.
Add the diced peppers and cook gently for another 6-8 minutes, or until softened but still with a bit of bite. The potatoes by now should be tinged with gold and cooked through. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Beat the eggs, season with salt and pepper and stir in the coriander. Heat a film of oil on the base of a 22cm omelette pan, add the vegetables and pour in the eggs.
Cook at a very low temperature (otherwise the bottom will be leathery) for about 15-20 minutes or until almost set, then dot the surface with the feta cheese. Cook for a few more minutes then flash under a hot grill to set and lightly brown the top. It should still be slightly soft in the middle as it will cook further in the residual heat.
Slide onto a plate and allow to sit for 10 minutes before slicing and serving. It’s good with some crusty bread and a green salad. Or, of course, French beans.