There’s a lot of beautiful, exquisitely plated food on season two of FX’s The Bear. A frothing, sculptural, overwrought hibiscus tea served in its own hibiscus cloud. A delicate, savory cannoli topped with pearls of caviar. A shiso gelee, tweezered to death, that’s likened to a “minty Snickers bar.” But it’s the simple omelet that Sydney (Ayo Edebiri) makes for Nat (Abbey Elliot), filled with Boursin, finished with chives and potato chips, that’s captured hearts and minds across the internet. As I watched Syd lovingly craft this omelet, it wasn’t her (genius) addition of crushed chips that caught my eye—it was the way she whisked her eggs through a fine-mesh sieve.
Why would she do that? Could that make for better texture? Would it affect the color? Could it actually make beaten eggs creamier? This technique isn’t new—it’s a critical step in prepping beaten eggs for chawanmushi and other steamed egg dishes to reduce bubbles and boost smoothness in the final custard.
Fine Mesh Cocktail Strainer
You might already know that using a sieve when making poached eggs can be helpful: The more watery parts of the white slip through the holes, rendering the eventual poach less wispy and stringy. But whisking eggs in a sieve for an omelet was completely novel to me. So to find answers I turned to egg-obsessive food director Chris Morocco.
As it turns out, Chris told me, an egg is made up more than a white, yolk, and shell. There are eight parts of an egg, and some are harder to combine into a smooth mixture than others. “It’s more than just white and yolk that want to seamlessly integrate at the whisk of a fork,” he says. One part of the egg called the chalaza (and pronounced like kuh-lay-zuh) has a particularly hard time homogenizing into the mixture. In the shell, the chalazae keep the yolk anchored in the center of the egg, but in dishes like Hana’s gyeranjjim, it’s removed to keep things extra smooth. “The chalazae are notorious for staying distinct in beaten eggs,” Chris says.
In addition to removing any bubbles, catching stray pieces of eggshell (happens to the best of us), and separating out that stubborn chalaza, beating your eggs through a sieve helps them end up just that much smoother. And in something like a French-style omelet, for example, smoothness is key. Sure, a hasty scramble can still be delicious, but for utterly silky, smooth eggs, it’s time to bust out your sieve.
Yes, chef:Creamy Crab and Boursin OmeletA luscious combination of creamy Boursin cheese and lump crab, cradled by tender omelet. A scattering of crunchy Ritz cracker crumbs seal the deal.