Omelette Arnold Bennett
The clouds were reasonably kind to us, and the sun shone after lunch to its full glory. At the garden table, six adults and seven children indulged in the omelette made famous by Arnold Bennett who, following a stay at the Savoy Grill where the recipe was perfected for him, insisted on having it cooked everywhere he went. So proud are they of this achievement, that you are still able to have this dish at the Savoy today.
1 slice onion
350g smoked haddock
5 happy eggs, separated
A generous sprinkling of parmesan cheese
1. Put the milk, onion, bay leaf and peppercorns in a pan which will fit the haddock in it, covered with milk.
2. Put the pan over a medium heat and add the fish.
3. Bring to a slow simmer for about 5 mimutes so that the haddock flakes from its skin.
4. Remove from the heat and set the pan, with the haddock in it, aside, for 10 minutes for the flavour to infuse into the milk.
5. Strain the milk into a jug and set aside the haddock, removing the skin and the additions (peppercorns etc.).
6. Melt the butter in the pan you just used, and add the flour, stirring all the time for about 2 minutes over a medium heat.
7. Gradually add two thirds of the warm flavour infused milk to the pan, off the heat.
8. Return to the heat stirring all the time until it is a sauce the consistency double cream.
9. At this stage you may set aside the ingredients at room temperature, ready to put the final dish together when you are ready to serve. If you do this, make sure you cover the sauce in order to prevent a skin from forming.
10. Whip the egg whites to medium/stiff peak so that a peak almost stands up when you lift the whisk up after whipping.
11. Add the egg yolks to the sauce when it is just warm.
12. Stir a third of the whites into the sauce and then gently fold in the remainder along with the flaked haddock.
13. Melt a knob of butter in a frying pan until is sizzles and add the uncooked omelette to it over a high heat for about 3 minutes or until bubbles break the surface and it is beginning to set.
14. While it is over the heat generously grate parmesan cheese to cover the surface.
15. Place under a hot grill until golden.
16. Serve immediately with crusty bread and butter or a healthier salad.
It is supposed to be a little runny but if you feel is is under-done, just put it back in the oven for a couple of minutes or under the grill. If over-done a little, add some cream to loosen the cooked texture. It should be soft, light and fluffy with a slightly runny middle. If you really want to go for it, drizzle some cream on top!