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Sep 29, 2007 08:48 AM

Did I really buy an omelette pan?

I bought this pan today at Bridge Kitchenware, on the recommendation of the person working there and after telling him that I wanted to learn to make omelettes and needed a pan:

It's oval, rather than round, as so I was a bit taken aback, especially after seeing the shape of the pan on the site that is referred to as an omelette pan. This one - which they did have in stock:

Edit - I've now looked at my Julia Child - and frankly I can't tell from the drawings if that pan is oval or round - looks different in different drawings! I don't want to season it until I'm sure it will work - in case I need to return it.

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  1. I believe that this pan is designed to cook fish.

    1 Reply
    1. re: pikawicca

      Yes - I noticed it said that on the website - I've never had them steer me wrong before, but I wondered.

    2. French omlettes are oval, in america we make round omlettes, no different, you dont need any special pan, all you really need to make a decent omlette is a 6 inch round non stick pan. you can get one at a local retaurant supply for about $8.00

      13 Replies
      1. re: chefsklls

        Thanks - since I already bought this one - is it correct that the one I bought should do the trick?

        1. re: chefsklls

          French omelettes are oval because of the way they are folded, not because they are cooked in an oval pan. Oval pans are intended to accommodate fish. I think that the classic French technique of folding the omelette would be quite difficult in an oval pan.

          1. re: pikawicca

            Thanks - wondered about that too. Somehow I don't want to start off on this journey of learning to make omelettes with the wrong pan! They're closed now but I'm going to call and talk to Mr. Bridge (jr.!) on Monday!

            1. re: MMRuth

              I think you're wise to get the real deal. However, I cooked a whole red snapper this evening, and would've loved to have had my aunt's oval fish pan!

              1. re: pikawicca

                Hmm - it was only $35 - so maybe I should hang on to it!

              2. re: MMRuth

                Was just perusing a '69 edition of The French Chef Cookbook and came across a photo of recommended pots and pans. The caption begins, "Look for heavy frying pans that hold and spread the heat: the oval cast-iron pan (1) is useful for browning meat and poultry as well as sauteing fish, and the long-handled round pan (4) is perfect for omelettes; these are French imports."

                I've had a lovely oval (about 8.5 X 12) copper-core stainless saute pan for years and find I hardly ever use it. There's a temperature differential between the center part of the pan that sits on the burner and the two ends that do not that I find frustrating to deal with.

                1. re: JoanN

                  Yes - the issue of the oval shape has been "worrying" me. I'm going to keep this pan for fish, but head back there to get a real omelette pan

                  Edit - well, I just called and talked to "Mrs. Bridge, Jr.", who said that the clerk who sold me that pan favours it for omelettes, but that they generally recommend a round pan. So, I'll be heading back down there so that I can get started on my JC omelette cooking quest!

                  Thanks for your feedback!

                  1. re: MMRuth

                    MMRuth, when you finally get your round omelette pan and begin your tutorial, I have a simple truc for your delicious success. It is something I learned in France and have never seen in a cookbook. Instead of adding the filling ingredients to the omelette, begin by sauteeing the filling ingredients before adding the beaten eggs. Add the butter to your hot pan, add filling ingredients and let sizzle for a minute. Toss and it's time to begin the omelette by adding eggs. This way, the filling is hot when you add the eggs and doesn't slow the cooking process, nor do you need dirty a second pan to heat the filling ingredients.
                    NB: this works well with onions, mushrooms, ham etc and is NOT suitable for cheese or anything else that melts.

                    Good Luck on your project! It takes longer to write the directions than it does to cook the omelette.

                    1. re: Sherri

                      Thank you for the tip - from what I have read, you are indeed correct about the timing - I think for now I'll try omelettes (once I've acquired the pan) w/o fillings, while I try to master the technique. Then I'll move on to fillings! Trucs always appreciated - I assume that one removes the heated fillings while beginning the omelette, no?

                      1. re: MMRuth

                        Nope. Pour the beaten eggs right over the heated filling and proceed, per St. Julia.

                        I wasn't clear enough in my first post when I wrote "...let sizzle for a minute. Toss and it's time to begin ....." This sounds like there is an interruption. There is not, it's a single process.
                        What I meant to write was "toss the filling in the omelette pan so that it neither burns nor sticks. With the pan back on the heat - and filling ingredients remaining in the pan - add the beaten eggs. Proceed". The filling is hot, the eggs cook and there is only a single pan for cleanup.

                        BTW -- I also break another sacred French canon with my omelette pan -- I use it to make crepes. It's perfect!

                        More Good Luck to you.

            2. re: chefsklls

              The only concern I would have would be the fact that the cheaper pans need to be replaced frequently - because they do not withstand the high heat needed to make a good omelette.

              This one seems interesting

              1. re: chefsklls

                I don't think a six inch pan is big enough. It's certainly not what I've seen Julia use. I have trouble with an 8 inch pan, especially if I want to do three eggs. But even with two, there isn't quite enough room for the movement shown in Julia's video. I'm looking for a nine or ten inch pan.

              2. Have you used it as yet? I'm sure in the end it only matters if it affects your cooking.

                How is it in terms of heat conduction? I'd be interested to try it myself, or hear about it.

                3 Replies
                1. re: Bedeo

                  I have yet to season it, and now that I've decided to purchase a "proper" omelette pan, will season them together, try them both out for their intended purposes, and report back!

                  1. re: Bedeo

                    Black steel does not conduct very well, and it does heat unevenly. But then, an omelette shouldn't be in the pan long enough for it to matter. But honestly, the only valid reason to get black steel cookware is because it's "cool" (a valid point when not taken too seriously) and because it's cheap. All-Clad, or even a cheap Wear-Ever nonstick pan, will produce a fine omelette...

                    1. re: MikeG

                      I don't care for aluminium or non-stick stuff. I like a stainless pan that is either copperclad of has an Al slab. Frankly, my favorite place to shop is the commercial kitchen supply places, the stuff is inexpensive and does the job extremely well: what more does one want. If you want something to show off buy a painting!

                  2. Went back yesterday and bought the round omelette pan. Now I just have to season them both!