When travelling in India it is quite usual to find only rather unprepossessing places to stop and eat at along the road. In these cases the one dish that never fails is masala omelette — a simple omelette with a dash of chilli, fresh coriander leaves, little onions and tomatoes. Eggs in India are good and the omelette is made freshly in front of you.
Back at home, this is an ideal dish to remember if you want to make yourself a quick snack.
Cut open the chillies under running water, discard the seeds and stems and slice the halves finely across. Remove any large stalks from the coriander sprigs and chop the leaves only very roughly. Peel the shallots and slice across as finely as possible. Put the tomatoes in a bowl, pour boiling water over them and leave for about 2 minutes, then drain, peel and cut into small cubes. Mix all these ingredients together.
Have 2 warmed serving plates ready. Break 2 eggs into each of 2 bowls and whisk together with a fork. Divide the chopped ingredients in two and stir into each bowl of eggs. Season each with salt.
Put half the butter into an omelette pan over a fairly high heat until foaming. Then add the contents of one bowl and stir with a fork for a few seconds until it starts to thicken. Working quickly, move the egg that has set at the side of the pan so that the uncooked egg pours into the space made and sets too. Cook for a minute or two, until the top is about to set but still slightly runny. Then tilt the pan to one side and, using a spatula, fold over the omelette and slide it carefully out of the pan on to one of the warmed serving plates. Add the remaining butter to the pan and repeat the procedure with the second bowl of eggs.
© 1997 Josceline Dimbleby. All rights reserved.