Sauté

Omelet Curry

April  3, 2021
5 Stars
Photo by James Ransom
  • Prep time 20 minutes
  • Cook time 45 minutes
  • Serves 4
Author Notes

This delicious Moplah omelet curry is typically served at street side stalls on the Malabar Coast of Kerala. Kerala is the home to some of the best black pepper in the world, along with other spices like cinnamon, clove, nutmeg, cardamom, turmeric, and vanilla. It has a long, storied history as a spice trading post, and Kerala food has been greatly influenced by the spice trade and diversity of traders themselves. Arabs, Portuguese, Syrian Christians, and some of the oldest groups of Jews in India came and settled in Kerala, contributing a range of ingredients and flavors that remain a part of the region's cuisine to this day.

Moplah cuisine (or Mappila food), was influenced by Arab traders who came to Kerala in search of spices thousands of years ago. They intermarried with the locals and created a unique Muslim community called Moplah. This particular dish is not one of the famous Moplah dishes served at restaurants but an everyday food served on the street and made in home kitchens. It's generally eaten with a bread called pao (which comes from the Portuguese) or with Malabar parathas. Malaysian parathas are almost exactly like the original, but a little flakier—I call them “croissant rotis.” Personally, I enjoy this curry with pao, the closest equivalent of which here is a soft bread roll or brioche bun, to sop up the sauce from this curry. Duck eggs are also very common in that area, so you can try making the omelet with duck eggs instead (fewer of them, of course, as they are much bigger than the regular eggs).

This is a one dish meal and it makes great leftovers. —MasalaMama

Test Kitchen Notes

The gravy for this dish is thick and should wrap around the omelet strips. Note that the omelet will soak up some of the gravy and make it thicker, so make sure to factor that in. —The Editors

Ingredients
  • Omelets
  • 6 eggs
  • 1 small red onion, finely chopped
  • 2 Thai green chiles or serrano peppers, de-seeded and finely chopped
  • 1 small bunch cilantro leaves, chopped (divided)
  • Salt to taste
  • Olive oil
  • Curry
  • 2 teaspoons ground coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon each: fennel seed, cumin seed, chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon each: black pepper, turmeric, garam masala
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon brown mustard seeds
  • 2 sprigs curry leaves (optional)
  • 3 shallots or small red onions, sliced (about 1 1/2 cups)
  • 2 Thai green chiles or serrano peppers, de-seeded and finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated fresh ginger
  • 2 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 1 1/4 cups whole peeled tomatoes, chopped or crushed
  • 1 1/2 cups coconut milk
  • Salt, to taste
  • 1 handful roughly chopped cilantro, to garnish
In This Recipe
Directions
  1. For the omelets, crack 6 eggs into a bowl, season with salt, and whisk well. Add the chopped onions, green chiles, and cilantro and mix well.
  2. Heat about 1 tablespoon of oil in a small non-stick pan over medium-high heat. Once hot, lower heat to medium and add about 1/3 of the egg mixture. Cook the omelet until the underside is done, about 2 minutes, then flip the omelet over and cook for another minute or two until cooked through. Place on a paper towel-lined plate and set aside.
  3. Repeat the process twice, until all the mixture is used up, and leave the omelets to cool on the plate.
  4. For the curry, if using whole spices, grind all together except mustard seeds in a spice grinder (otherwise combine all ground spices in a small bowl). Add a tablespoon or two of water and stir to make a thick paste.
  5. Heat 3 tablespoons of oil over medium-high heat in a frying pan or a large sauté pan. Once hot, add the mustard seeds. They will pop almost immediately and make a crackling sound. Quickly add the curry leaves (if using) and the sliced shallots or onion and cook, stirring often, until light brown, 8 to 10 minutes.
  6. Add the chopped green chiles, ginger, garlic, 1 1/2 tablespoons of the spice paste, and salt, and cook, stirring often until the raw smell dissipates, about 5 minutes. Add a little more oil or a tablespoon of water if the mixture is sticking to the bottom of the pan.
  7. Add the tomatoes and cook about 8 to 10 minutes, then add 3/4 cup of coconut milk and mix well. Taste and adjust salt. Add more coconut milk for a thinner texture if desired.
  8. Roll each of the omelets into a tube shape, then cut them into strips about an inch thick. Gently add the rolled omelet strips and shake the pan to mix, rather than stir (so they keep their shape and don't break apart). Cook for another few minutes to warm through. Serve garnished with fresh cilantro and lime wedges.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Kristin Proctor
    Kristin Proctor
  • gingerroot
    gingerroot

2 Reviews

Kristin P. March 13, 2022
This was delicious! Followed the recipe exactly except fried with coconut oil instead of olive oil and my husband who is from Kerala loved it. Thanks for the great recipe!
 
gingerroot March 14, 2021
Just what I needed. Easy to put together and I really love the egg with a delicious tomato based curry. Made homemade naan to sop up all the sauce. Will go into the regular rotation.