To truly master the art of brunch, one must conquer the humble omelet. Luckily, we can call on Sasha Martin for a simple guide to fluffy French perfection! Her book Life from Scratch: A Memoir of Food, Family, and Forgiveness is available now on Amazon, and we’re sharing an excerpt with you below:

A too-brown omelet, Chef always said, was never the fault of the hot pan but a lazy cook. This recipe is for those brave souls who may already have a delicious omelet recipe in hand, but enjoy the challenge of speed. Though we used clarified butter at the CIA (because it doesn’t smoke at high temperatures), I’ve substituted more readily available ghee (look for it in the dairy case).

A recipe like this, simple though it seems, takes several Saturday mornings to perfect. Once the basics are mastered, fillings such as fried mushrooms or peppers may be added.

Perfect omelet

A few tips from the trenches:

  • Have everything ready to go (eggs, ghee, filling, topping, plate, paper towel).
  • Keep the eggs moving or they’ll set too quickly.
  • Julia Child was right: Flip the pan with conviction. Otherwise the omelet might slide to the side or, worse, to the floor.
  • The times indicated are mere suggestions — variations in burner intensity and pan thickness will affect how quickly the eggs cook. The shape of the eggs, whether they’re watery or fluffy, stiff or dry, is the best road map to a perfect omelet.

The Perfect Omelet (Makes enough for 1 omelet)

3 large eggs
1 good pinch salt
1 teaspoon ghee
Small handful of shredded cheese, like cheddar or Gruyère
Finishing touches: A sprinkling of fresh, chopped parsley or chives

In a medium bowl, vigorously whisk the eggs with a pinch of salt. Add ghee to a 10-inch nonstick skillet and preheat over high heat for about 2 minutes.

0:00 Pour in well-beaten eggs — they should cackle like a hungry chicken when they hit the pan. Immediately stir them, making quick, tight circles with a heatproof spatula — keep them moving — until creamy curds form.

0:36 Use the spatula to smooth across the top of the wet curds until they are flat and even. Sprinkle the cheese down the middle. At this point, any other precooked fillings may be added, such as sliced mushrooms or peppers. By now the eggs should be mostly set. Prepare to fold the omelet in thirds. Make the first fold by lifting one edge and bringing it to the center of the omelet. Flip onto a plate.

1:15 To complete the fold, use a paper towel to tuck the final third under the omelet, toward the center. Enjoy this neat, rectangular roll with a happy sprinkle of parsley or chives.

Find more from Sasha at her website and in her new book.

Image via Sasha Martin

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