Troubleshoot My Egg Dish
- Jim Leff Jul 23, 2013 12:39 PM
This turned out good-not-great, and I'd love to hear suggestions.
[Update: I'd forgotten how drastically (and senselessly) the photo upload function shrinks photos, so I'll link to a shot rather than upload one: http://imgur.com/Q3aUkuR]
Here's what I did:
Sauteed 1/4 chopped onion and 3 chopped scallions in 2 tsp butter for a couple mins.
Added a medium tomato (coarsely chopped), 1/2 chopped avocado, handful of baby spinach leaves. Cooked for a couple mins.
Added 3 egg whites, 1 yolk (beaten with a bit of milk + salt and pepper).
When eggs set, stirred in broken up pieces of a TJ's whole wheat tortilla (toasted till almost burnt, then lightly buttered).
1. Eggs wound up extremely non-fluffy.
Due to the water content of the tomatoes?
2. Tomatoes a bit dry
To fix this and #1, maybe I should add fresh chopped tomato after cooking eggs, or at least much later in the process
3. Lack of scallion flavor
Maybe they're overwhelmed by the onions? Maybe I overcooked the onion/scallion combo?
4. Tortilla pieces too soggy
Guess I need to add them later. Or find a thicker bread to use, that can stand up better to the moisture.
Good thoughts, boobiebaby. Click photo, though, for a sense of what I'm doing with the bread.
Don't really want to "top" the eggs....I want more of a big scramble here. But, sure, I can do that in skillet last minute.
I do like warming the avocado, and unifying it with the other flavors. But, again, it can certainly come later.
re: Jim Leff
Avocado isn't really something that will unify with the other flavors, such onion or jalapeno would, for example. You can mix it together, but the flavor wont' integrate with the other ingredients -- you'll taste the avocado where you have pieces of avocado.
If you don't want the tomatoes wilted/mushy, then add them at the end, just before the eggs have set fully. Definitely sprinkle the scallions raw at the end though -- either on top of the finished product, or just before the eggs are full set. Also, fold the eggs gently as they cook, instead of stirring, to keep the air in them after whisking. If you stir, the weight of your other items will just flatten them out. You could also sauté your onions, tomatoes, spinach, etc and use them as an omelet filling --- then your omelet can be nice and fluffy.
I do an egg white scramble with baby spinach, mushrooms, red bell pepper and either onion (cooked) or scallions, raw at the end. I cook the onions and mushroom, stir in the bell pepper and spinach, then the egg whites. Sometimes I'll fold in some feta cheese at the end. Sometimes I skip the feta and put it into a warmed whole wheat tortilla, and top with cheddar or Monterey cheese and Cholula.
Flour tortillas, by nature will get mushy when wet. Corn tortillas may hold up a bit better, but you would be better off using tortilla chips if you are trying to retain some texture.
I'd add scallions and tomatoes later in the process. Avocado to top but not added for cooking phase. Once eggs are added, keep heat down low and don't over stir.
Your dish sounds like a riff on tex-mex style migas so I'd go with fried or baked corn tortilla strips or fragments for real crunch.
re: Jim Leff
cooking avocado is pointless in my book - you want to add it just before the end so it gets mixed but not cooked.
Do you want the tortilla to be crunchy? If so add it at the end. If you are really thinking migas, then don't toast it, but tear it up and saute it with the onions and tomatoes. The tortilla pieces will be pliable, not crunchy.
I'd add some grated cheese. And jalapenos.
Were you looking to end up w/ something more like this?
If so, as the recipe says, add tomatoes after eggs start setting and add scallions later. I usually add scallions near the end of the cooking process, not sauteed early.
Were you looking for the tortilla to stay firm/crunchy? If you dry it out then it'll just get soggy--think bread pudding. Dry bread absorbs the liquids. If you liked them pan dried/toasted, just mix that in after you're finished cooking, off the heat.
I'd do: onions, then spinach, then eggs, to set, then tomatoes/avocado, sprinkle w/ scallions. Remove from heat and add tortillas.
Beat the eggs vigorously before adding to the pan, then keep them moving as they cook. Either don't add the tortillas until the very end, just mixing them in and immediately plating, or put the tortillas on the plate and cover them with the cooked egg mixture.
When I add tomatoes to an egg dish (or just about any dish where they're a vegetable instead of a sauce ingredient) I go for the meaty ones, take the tops off and scoop out and discard the runny pulp and seeds, then chop up the solid part. Yes, watery ingredients in stove-top egg will steam them dry. Sometimes that's okay (as in scrambled with cottage cheese), but it wasn't what you wanted here.
I think any wheat tortilla might be miscast here, too. Really dry corn ones stand up to this kind of treatment pretty well, even when thoroughly soggy - and they would not get soggy here. I would be tempted to fry them first, in fact …
Haven't a clue about the scallions; I cook with them a lot and they seem to default to Overwhelming. Maybe oil instead of butter? The lactic acid could be blunting the alkaloids in the scallions. But I am not Harold McGee …