I have this recurring nightmare where I'm strangled by my cherry tomato plant. It creeps through my window in the morning's wee hours, while my children doze peacefully in the next room. During one of their hot, breathy exhales, the vine curls around my neck and plugs my nostrils with two perfect, sunset-colored tomatoes. And then it leaves, like, a million more tomatoes all over my dead body as a calling card, like the Barefoot Bandit, but without the chalk footprints, or all the media attention.
Seriously, though, my backyard tomato plant is going gangbusters, and trying to keep up with it is like trying to chase a toddler around the mall. As soon as I pluck the ripe ones, 17 more turn from green to orange in about 6 seconds. I swear I caught it giving me the finger just yesterday.
So, I'm punishing it by eating as many as I can in short order. This omelet is an excellent way to dispense with a few handfuls at once, Caprese-style.
Now, I'm a fan of a well-made Caprese salad, with big, juicy tomatoes, unblemished basil and hunks of milky mozzarella. But too often these salads are woefully uninspired, and I really feel like they need to bring something new to the table in order to continue capturing my imagination. So I've thrown a few eggs at the problem.
Here's a really quick flat omelet that is exactly what it seems, only better. The omelet is prettier than a traditional omelet, for one, because you can actually see the filling, which, I fully admit, is more of a topping than a filling if we're being technical. I cook it in, and finish it with, a generous stream of olive oil to continue the Caprese theme. And I finish it under the broiler to crisp the edges and fully melt the cheese. The whole thing takes about 5 minutes to make, and if you can overlook the fact that the tomatoes just tried to murder you in your sleep, I'd say you'll be quite pleased with the results.
Recipe for Caprese Flat Omelet
Use an 8 1/2" nonstick skillet with an ovenproof handle to make this simple summer omelet. (If the handle isn't ovenproof, wrap it with heavy duty aluminum foil.) It serves one hungry person, or, if serving toast and fruit alongside, it just may serve two. Sharing is friendly.
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, plus additional for drizzling, if desired
2 large eggs, beaten with a fork
1 1/2 ounces mozzarella, cut into 5 or 6 thin slices
1/2 cup cherry tomatoes (mixed colors), halved
Small fresh basil leaves and coarse salt, for serving
Heat skillet over medium heat. Add the olive oil and allow to warm for one full minute, swirling the pan to coat. Add the eggs.
Swirl the pan above the heat a few times. As the eggs begin to set, lift up one side of the omelet with a small heatproof spatula and allow the oozy eggs to run underneath. After about two minutes, when only a bit of jiggle remains, scatter the cheese slices and tomato halves (cut side up) atop the eggs. Cook 1 minute longer.
Slip the eggs under a hot broiler for 2 to 3 minutes, until the cheese melts, the eggs turn golden brown in the center, and the edges crisp. Remove from the oven and sprinkle with fresh basil leaves and coarse salt. Drizzle with a thin stream of additional olive oil, if desired.