There are a number of Indian recipes which never find their way to the restaurant menu. Omelette curry is one of them. This is a very easy dish and it can be cooked in a jiffy. When the omelette boils in the gravy, it swells up a little, absorbs the flavors of the gravy and becomes soft and juicy. This curry is made in different ways in different parts of India. I am sharing an omelette curry recipe from West Bengal (Kolkata), where it is called dimer jhol, and is cooked in a simple way. The gravy is always less in this dish, for a more concentrated and culminated taste arising from carefully chosen spices mixed with the eggs’s own flavor and aroma. In addition, this dish is handy when you don’t have a sufficient number of eggs to feed a large(r) group of people. For instance, if you only have 3 eggs and you need to make egg curry for six people, you could easily add some besan (gram flour) to the 3 beaten eggs to add more substance. In this way, the omelettes would be denser and bigger and one omelette would easily feed two.
Bengali omlette curry
[Mustard oil is pungent and Bengalis love to cook with this oil. Once the oil is heated and begins to smoke, the raw smell goes away, leaving an appetizing aroma behind. However, you can substitute with canola or sunflower oil if mustard oil is not available. ]
Onion paste: 2 tbsp
Green chilli paste: 1 tsp (divided)
Milk: 2 tbsp
Salt: ½ tsp for the omlette and 1 tsp for the gravy
Finely chopped onion: ½ cup
Finely chopped garlic: 1 tbsp
Ginger paste: 1 tsp
Bay leaf: 1
Cinnamon sticks (one-inch each): 2
Green cardamoms: 4
Dried red chillies: 2
Coriander powder: 1.5 tsp
Cumin powder: 1 tsp
Turmeric powder: ½ tsp
Yogurt: 2 tbsp
Spring onion greens’ paste: 1.5 tbsp
Mustard oil (or white oil)
Break the eggs together in a bowl. Add ½ tsp salt and beat well. Add the milk, onion paste and half the green chilli paste and beat once more. Divide into six (or eight) equal parts and shallow-fry each part to make six (or eight) vertically folded omlettes. Keep aside.
Heat oil to the smoking point. Add the bay leaf and dried red chillies. When the chillies darken a bit, add the cinnamon sticks, cloves, green cardamoms and peppercorns. When these start sputtering, add the finely chopped garlic and sauté for 1 min. Add the chopped onions and sauté till the onions are browned and soft.
Add the ginger and sauté for 3 min. Now make a paste by mixing the salt, turmeric, cumin and coriander powders with a little water (roughly 3 tbsp). Add this paste to the pan and keep the flame at medium. Sauté constantly, till the mixture starts leaving oil. Sprinkle some more water and sauté till oil starts leaving from the mixture one more time.
Mix the yogurt, spring onion greens’ paste and the rest of the green chilli paste together in a bowl with around 2 tbsp water. Add this yogurt mixture to the pan now. Sauté for 5 min and then add 3 cups of warm water.
When the gravy starts boiling, slowly insert the omlettes, one at a time.
Cover and simmer for 5 min. Serve with rice or chapattis.