A Food Break: Alice B. Toklas’ Tricolour Omelette


This fascinating recipe is from Alice B. Toklas’ cookbook. She had written it in an informal paragraph format, so I modernized the format to make it easier to follow and easier to imagine. When I saw the title, I imagined it as looking like a tricolored flag, in stripes. It doesn’t have stripes, but is layered. The saffron-infused yellow layer and the spionach-infused green layer are rolled together, and then are surrounded by a tomato-infused red sauce.  It makes a gigantic omelette! I have not cooked this yet, but long to prepare it for my friends.

Alice B. Toklas’ Tricolour Omelette

1 lb. fresh spinach
4 whole eggs
½ teaspoon salt

3 egg yolks
4 whole eggs
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon powdered saffron

4 tablespoons tomato puree
2 cups dry white wine
4 tablespoons melted butter
1 tablespoon flour
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon pepper
pinch of cayenne
pinch of cloves
pinch of nutmeg
1 tablespoon onion juice

Tomato sauce:
Melt 4 tb butter, then mix melted butter with 1 tb flour until a smooth roux
Heat 4 tb tomato puree with 2 cups of dry shite wine. Once hot, pour roux into the tomato sauce. Stir.
Once it is nearly boiling, add ½ tea salt, a pinch cayenne, cloves, and nutmeg, and 1 tb onion juice.
Simmer for 15 minutes, then add 4 tb butter. Do NOT boil!

Green omelette:
Put spinach in pan without water over medium heat until it boils, turning frequently. Turn to low and cook 10 minutes. Cool under cold water, drain, and press through a fine sieve until you make a puree.
Beat 4 eggs with ½ teaspoon of salt, and add the spinach puree to the eggs. Make this into an omelette, set aside, and keep hot.

Yellow omelette:
Beat 3 egg yolks, 4 whole eggs, ½ teas salt, and ¼ teas powdered saffron, and then make into a second omelette.
Layer the yellow omelette on top of the green omelette. Fold omelettes together. You will have a green layer and a yellow layer.

Plate your très belle omelette on an oval pottery serving platter.  We suggest a yellow or white dish to show up the red sauce. Pour the tomato sauce around your omelette and serve! This goes well with candlelight, salad, and witty conversation. (recipe from The Alice B. Toklas Cookbook by Alice B. Toklas and drawing by Scout)

About Avery Cassell

Avery Cassell is a queer butch San Francisco writer, poet, cartoonist, and artist who grew up in Iran.
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