This would be a wonderful centrepiece for a special celebratory meal, such as a summer wedding, christening, anniversary, birthday or a bridal shower. Open faced omelettes, studded with fresh vegetables and herbs including chives and chive flowers, are sandwiched together with herb and garlic cream cheese to create a savoury vegetarian gateau! Top the gateau off with parmesan cheese shavings and toss baby salad leaves on and around the gateau to serve. This does take a little time to prepare, however, it is made a day before it is needed, making it ideal for a special event. You could add thinly sliced ham or crispy bacon if this is not required as a vegetarian dish. Preparation time includes the chilling time overnight. (The idea for this recipe was taken from a Good Food magazine - summer 2008.)
- 10 eggs
- 29.58 ml olive oil
- 2 small courgettes, finely chopped (zucchini)
- 4 spring onions, thinly sliced (green onions)
- 4 stems of chives with fresh edible flowers, finely sliced and flowers shredded
- 4 roasted red peppers, from a jars, drained and finely diced
- 4 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
- 1 small red chile, deseeded and finely diced
- salt and pepper
- 400 g cream cheese or 400 g boursin cheese
- 59.16 ml milk, to mix
- 59.16 ml fresh chives, snipped in to small pieces
- 14.79 ml fresh oregano, finely chopped
- 14.79 ml fresh basil, finely chopped
- salt and pepper
- Baby Spinach or rocket or mixed salad green
- fresh shaved parmesan cheese
- Take 2 bowls and add 5 eggs to each bowl - whisk lightly.
- In a large frying pan, add 1 teaspoon of the olive oil and fry the courgettes, spring onions, chives and chive flowers. Saute for about 8 to 10 minutes over a low to medium heat until the vegetables and herbs are soft but not coloured. Set aside and season with salt and pepper.
- In one bowl of whisked eggs, add the fried courgette mixture and in the other bowl of eggs, add the red peppers, garlic and chili - season well with salt and pepper.
- In an 8" omelette or pancake pan, heat up some of the remaining olive oil and using a third of the courgette omelette mixture, make an open face omelette; fry the omelette for about 5 minutes or until the omelette is firm. Carefully invert the omelette on to a plate - then slide it back in to the pan cooking the other side of the omelette for about 3 minutes or until firm. Make two more courgette omelettes this way and set them to one side to cool. Continue with the red pepper omelette mixture - making three more open face omelettes. You will now have three courgette omelettes and three red pepper omelettes. Allow them to cool before assembling your "Gateau".
- Whilst the omelettes are cooling, make the filling. Mix all of the filling ingredients together - check the seasoning and add salt and pepper to taste.
- Take an 8" cake tine, line it with some cling film, making sure that it overlaps the sides to about 6".
- Assemble the gateau - start of with the most attractive red pepper omelette, and place it in the cake tin - spread some filling over the top of the omelette. Continue with a courgette omelette and then a red pepper omelette - continue stacking the omelettes this way, spreading the filling in between them as you go. You will end up with a big multi-layered cake or sandwich of omelettes!
- Take the excess cling film and cover the gateau to cover it completely. Allow to rest in the fridge for 24 hours.
- When you are ready to serve it - carefully take the gateau out using the cling film to help you lift it out of the tin.
- Serve it on a pretty plate or cake stand, with the red pepper omelette facing the top.
- Sprinkle baby salad leaves and parmesan cheese shavings over the top and around the gateau. Chive flowers would also be an attractive garnish.
- To serve, cut in to wedges and serve with the salad leaves and parmesan shavings - with extra salad leaves and dressing if you wish.
I have made this twice and both times it was a complete success. It is also quite versatile in the way you can play with the omelette mixtures. I added a few sun dries tomatoes with the roast peppers. Also, experiment with the cheese filling but be careful not to overpower the dish as it is quite delicate. I finished off the decoration with flowers and leaves from the chives. Just a few leaves spread randomly in an overlapping diagonal pattern.