Before I get into telling you about this Mediterranean-Style Dairy-Free Omelet (For Two!), indulge me while I take a little trip down memory lane…
Almost ten and a half years ago, in February of 2006, I sat down and composed my first blog post. I’ve been going through my old recipe archives, which are a huge mess, I admit. BUT it hasn’t stopped me from reminiscing. There are quite a few missing posts and missing photos that didn’t make it over from Blogger when I switched to WordPress a few years ago. I still remember the first template I used to start my blog. It’s interesting to me, and perhaps a little amusing, how blogging has changed since that first blog post. I was pregnant with my son. He turned ten in June. My daughter was barely talking and now she’s almost 12, in middle school, playing the viola, climbing trees, and beating me in bike races. I even have a third child now, another darling daughter who is in third grade and a mini version of me. (I feel like I’m getting karma payback big time from my parents!) We lived in the NYC suburbs in a teeny two bedroom, second floor apartment. Now we live all the way across the country in the Pacific Northwest in a house with a garage and a yard. I now work from home. My hobby turned into my career. Everything is so different! It’s just crazy how much has changed in these past 10+ years. I confess that I miss those early years so much it hurts – but not because I hate where I am right now. I just ache to go back and tell myself that everything will be super hard, but worth it.
As my favorite quote says:
“Everything will be alright in the end so if it is not alright it is not the end.” ― Deborah Moggach, The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel That’s been one of our mantras that we keep going back to over and over again because it is comforting.
I started to realize that I’ve been dreading the writing part about blogging. I love taking the photos and developing the recipes, but I’ve hated coming up with something to say. There is really only one way to say a recipe is delicious. The rest can seem like a bunch of filler and fluff, and nonsense. And I know a lot of people just skim through to the recipe and click away. And that’s totally fine, of course! But I’ve honestly, truly missed the part of blogging that I used to enjoy the most – writing and sharing a part of myself. Isn’t that why writers write? We (or they) hope that someone will read the words that spill out from our fingers as we type or pen the words; that there will be a connection that transcends distances, years, and other barriers. That’s why I was such an avid reader of blogs from the very beginning – I loved reading the words that someone formed into sentences and paragraphs.
It’s a peek into someone else’s thoughts and experiences that are raw and real in a way that you can’t always get from a book. You know what I mean? Not everyone that has the best stories will become a published author or be recognized for their words. My husband has such a friend who writes the most exquisite poetry and doesn’t have an audience to read them except for us. It’s such a private thing, writing. Or it can be. Maybe the right word is: intimate.
I haven’t wanted to write about my real life the last few years because I came to blog to get away from life. Long-term unemployment, battles with depression and anxiety, health issues, parenting hardships, etc, etc. We’ve had to deal with a lot and I have wanted to both write about it and keep it as private as possible, which never seemed to work. So I made a decision to go back to blogging the way I used to do it when I loved it the most. And that includes adding in more than the recipe. I need it, and maybe one of you out there needs it. Who knows?
I can tell you this: I’m at a better place now that I have ever been mentally and physically. It feels good to say that, so hopefully it will come out as I write.
And then we come to this omelet which has become a favorite of ours. My husband and I are often alone in the morning after we get the kids off to school. Sometimes I think we spend too much time together, but on the days he goes out to run an errand or volunteer somewhere, I miss him and our mornings together. So maybe we don’t spend too much time together after all – maybe it’s the right amount.
Anyway, after I have my smoothie first thing, I start to get hungry in the later morning when it’s not quite time for lunch, but my tummy is rumbling. I’m trying my hardest to keep my blood sugar on an even keel (more on another day about that) and I’ve found that eating loads of protein, and sometimes that means eggs, really does the trick. In the past I have claimed to be an egg hater, but I suppose that isn’t the whole truth. I’m just picky about how they are prepared. What I really love is a good omelet.
I watched Julia Child and Jacques Pepin make omelets on their respective shows and I think they’re the best to learn from. I can now boast that after years of practice, I finally got the egg part of the perfect omelet down pat. My kids now request that I make them omelets too. They like theirs filled with oozy cheddar or swiss, and if they’re really lucky, some diced ham. But this is how I like mine best: spinach, olives, sun-dried tomatoes, onions, marinated artichoke hearts, herbs, and a good sprinkle of red pepper flakes. Seriously, it’s the best dairy-free omelet you’ll ever taste. We’ve added goat cheese or a good Italian melting cheese before, but I admit I don’t even miss the cheese. (Check the recipe notes if you want to add cheese to this.)
Also, I like omelets that are nice and golden brown. I know some would call this “burnt.” I prefer “caramelized” or “nicely browned.” (I still shudder at those pale, colorless rubbery, thin omelets from certain restaurants. You probably know which ones I’m referring to!)
To sum up: this dairy-free omelet is fluffy, golden brown, full of a punch of flavor in every bite, and the perfect thing for sharing with your favorite person, whomever that is. :)
- 6 large eggs, beaten
- 1-2 Tablespoons unsweetened almond milk (or milk)
- 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
- ½ onion, diced
- ¼ cup sun-dried tomatoes, julienned, drained if packed in oil
- ¼ cup marinated artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
- 2 Tablespoons pitted kalamata olives, drained and chopped
- ½ teaspoon dried oregano
- Pinch red pepper flakes, optional
- 1 cup fresh baby spinach
- Heat 1 teaspoon of the olive oil in an 8-inch nonstick skillet set over medium-high heat. Add the onion and cook until tender. Add the sun-dried tomatoes, artichoke hearts, oregano, and red pepper flakes. Cook for a few more minutes. Transfer to a small bowl and set aside. Turn off heat, but keep skillet warm.
- Place the eggs in a mixing bowl and add the non-dairy milk. Beat well with a fork or whisk. Place the skillet over medium high heat and add the remaining 1 teaspoon olive oil. Pour the eggs into the pan. Sprinkle with a little salt and pepper. With a thin silicone spatula, draw in the cooked edges of the eggs into the center, letting the raw eggs run to the edge of the pan. Repeat the process, tilting the pan a bit, if needed, until the eggs are mostly cooked. Quickly spread the sun-dried tomato mixture evenly over the eggs and top with the spinach. Fold the omelet in half on itself and cook for another minute or two. Carefully slip it out of the skillet and onto a plate.