This sensational omelette rests somewhere between the traditional French dish, and the Chinese version. The flavourings are sublime and intense. Blue swimmer crabs are plentiful in Australian waters and have deliciously sweet flesh. You can however, use any fresh crab that is available in your area, just don't use canned crab - try prawns (shrimp), or any fresh shellfish instead.
Ginger flowers are surprisingly enough - the flowers from a ginger plant. They are sensational - very mild and aromatic, even more so than young ginger, with a delicious crunch. They play delightfully with the sweet crabmeat. Into the mix go coriander leaves, Chinese black fungus and crisp shallots.
The real grabber is the presentation. The omelette is cooked flat, in the French style. Once cooked, it is placed over a small bowl, so that the filling can be placed inside. Simply wrap the omelette over the filling, invert onto a plate, and you have a magical omelette "dome" that your guests will be amazed at.
Makes 1 omelette
2 free range eggs
50 gm fresh crabmeat
1 bunch coriander (including roots)
1 clove garlic, peeled
4 white peppercorns
2 tsps fish sauce
1 Tbs Chinese black fungus (or other mushrooms)
1/2 a lime
1 tsp palm sugar, grated
1 ginger flower (or use a small knob of young ginger)
1 shallot, peeled and finely sliced
1 tsp vegetable oil
Slice the roots off the coriander and wash well. Place in a mortar and pestle with the garlic and peppercorns. Grind until you have a smooth paste. Add 1 tsp of the fish sauce and mix well. Crack the eggs into a bowl, along with the garlic paste and a tiny splash of water. Beat gently until the eggs are just broken up, then set aside.
Peel any hard petals off the ginger flower, then slice into very fine shreds (if using young ginger roots, choose a 2 cm piece, peel then cut into matchsticks. If you can only find dried black fungus, soak in hot water for 20 minutes. If using fresh, simply slice into small pieces. Place into a bowl with the crab, shallots and ginger flower.
Mix together the remaining 1 tsp of fish sauce, juice of the lime and palm sugar, and then mix well. Add half this to the crab mix and toss well.
Heat a non-stick omelette pan to medium high. Add the oil, and then pour in the egg mix. Let it set for a few seconds, then with the aid of a fork, pull the sides of the omelette towards the centre, pouring the unset egg around to fill in the gaps. Cook for another minute or so, until the eggs have just about set. Slip the omelette, cooked side down, into a small bowl so that the edges over-hang a little. Place the crab filling inside the omelette, then fold it up so it makes a neat parcel. Invert the omelette onto a plate and pour over the remaining sauce.