And I Can Cook, Too

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Custards Last Stand

Feb. 19, 2006
For the first course of my dinner with Lora, I chose to re-create a recipe for Lettuce Soup over Bacon-Onion Custard. In an effort to lighten the dish up a bit, I decided to use egg substitute instead of whole eggs. Challenge number one was clear: how to make custard on the grill? I toyed with many ideas: putting the raw custard in ramekins and creating a ban marie on the top shelf of the grill, using a pie tin and baking a frittata, but then I thought, “Hey! I’ve got a egg poaching pan! Simply put the custard in the egg dishes and poach it!” It was a foolproof plan.

Confident, I dug in. Once the bacon-onion custard was blended, I filled the poaching pan with water and placed it on the grill. When it came to a boil, I turned down the heat to a simmer. Smiling, I poured in my custard. And watched as it leaked through the holes in the bottom of the egg dishes into the simmering water. Undaunted, I decided that the remaining layer of bacon and onion would be an ample barrier to prevent additional leakage. In went more custard. And out it went again. Taking the pan off the heat, I quickly threw together more raw custard. At this point I could clearly see that some egg had actually poached in each of the dishes, and that would surely prevent any more leaking. With the pan back on the flame, I poured in a third round of custard. And watched as a churning water/boiled egg combo shot up through the dish rack over the eggcups and flooded the cooking custard. I knew that the custard and I were finished. I needed a new plan.

Lettuce Soup with Bacon-Onion Omelet
(serves 6)

For the soup:
Cooking Spray
2 heads Green Leaf or Butter Lettuce, coarsely chopped
½ medium Sweet Onion, coarsely chopped
2 bulbs Garlic, coarsely chopped
32 oz. fat free Chicken Broth
6 oz fat free Condensed Milk
Salt & Pepper to taste

For the omelet:
¾ c. Egg Substitute
¼ c. Milk
¼ c Sweet Onion, fine dice
4 slices Bacon

Turn the grill to medium heat. Coat a small stockpot with cooking spray, and add the onions and garlic. Sautee till soft. Add the lettuce, a little at a time, waiting until each addition has wilted slightly to add more. Once all of the lettuce has wilted, add the chicken broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer until lettuce is completely soft, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat. Using a stick blender, puree the soup. Add the condensed milk. Return to the heat and simmer, (do not boil.)

Place a large frying pan on the gill and allow it to heat. Add the bacon, and cook, turning once, until it is crisp. Remove the bacon and let cool. Chop into small pieces. Remove all but a trace of the bacon fat from the pan. Add the onion and sauté until soft, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool. Wipe the pan clean. Once cooled, combine the bacon and onion with the egg substitute, milk, salt and pepper, and whip with a fork until blended. Replace the pan on the grill over medium heat. Spray with cooking spray. Add the omelet mix, tilting the pan until the bottom completely covered. As the eggs cook, use a spatula to gently lift the edges of the omelet up to allow raw egg to slide underneath. When the omelet is almost cooked through, turn it over. Rather than fold the omelet once, roll it over and over until the entire omelet is rolled. Remove from heat. Cut the omelet into 6 slices and place each slice in a soup bowl. Cover with hot soup, and serve.


  • At 2:40 PM, Anonymous Lora said…

    Yummy! Can't wait to try it!


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