Old-time Spinach Omelet Recipe

I recently saw a hundred-year-old recipe for Spinach Omelet, and decided to give it a try. A homemade omelet makes breakfast special.

Often omelets are a little greasy and heavy, but Spinach Omelet is light and fluffy. The recipe calls for beating egg whites into stiff peaks, and then folding the remainder of the ingredients into them.  This omelet has a delicate spinach flavor – and is less savory than the typical modern omelet that also contains onions, bacon, or cheese – but is delightful.

Here is the hundred-year-old recipe:

Source: Good Housekeeping (June, 1917)

And here is the recipe updated for modern cooks:

Spinach Omelet

  • Servings: 2
  • Difficulty: moderate
  • Print

1 cup cooked spinach (approximately 4 cups fresh spinach)

2 tablespoons butter

1 1/2 tablespoons flour

1/3 teaspoon salt

dash of pepper

1/2 cup cream (I used half and half.)

4 eggs, separated

If using fresh spinach, rinse the spinach and put into a sauce pan. Do not add any additional water; the water clinging to the spinach leaves will be enough. Using medium heat, cook until the spinach is wilted (approximately 5 minutes). Remove from heat. Cool slightly, then coarsely  chop cooked spinach; set aside.

Using medium-low heat, melt the butter in a sauce pan; then stir in the flour, salt,  and pepper. While continuing to stir constantly, slowly add the cream. Increase heat to medium, and stir until the sauce thickens.  Remove from heat.  Beat egg yolks, then quickly stir into the white sauce.  Add cooked spinach, and stir to combine.

In a separate bowl, beat egg whites until stiff peaks form. (Be sure that the beaters are clean and dry – otherwise the egg whites might not stiffen and form peaks.) Gently fold the egg whites into the egg yolk mixture. Then cook omelet either on the stove top or in the oven.

Stove top method: Pour into a prepared omelet pan. (If needed grease to prevent sticking.) Cover and cook using low heat for about 12 minutes or until the is set. Fold omelet, and slip onto a plate. Serve immediately.

Oven method:  Pre-heat oven to 350° F. Heat a large oven-proof skillet on the top of the stove using medium-low heat. (If needed to prevent sticking, liberally grease the skillet before heating.) Pour the egg and  spinach mixture into the hot skillet, and gently cook for 1 minute. Move the skillet to the oven, and bake for about 12 minutes or until the egg mixture is set. Remove from oven, and loosen the edges of the omelet from the skillet with a knife or spatula, then turn onto a plate; fold into half. Serve immediately.


13 thoughts on “Old-time Spinach Omelet Recipe

  1. I rarely make an omelet for myself, but if I do, or am having someone else at table, this is how I do it. Sometimes, I add feta cheese, which is especially good with the spinach.

  2. It’s hard for me to believe that I am this old, but I remember when omelets were made this way! In fact, that’s why I never tried an omelet until I learned from the Frugal Gourmet (‘memba him?) how to make one the “new style.”

  3. We have some spinach in the house right now. I’ll bet John would love it in an omelet. With our grandson here, though, meals are a bit more rushed than normal. Think I’ll wait with this one. Yours looks lovely.

  4. I’ve not heard of using stiff peaked beaten egg whites for an omelet. I sounds light a delicious way to start off a day or even for a brunch.

  5. I’ve never heard of flour in an omelette. I guess it’s a quickie white sauce? It looks delicious. The first meal my sister ever made her husband was a fancy omelette with separated eggs and the whites beaten until fluffy. He asked for salsa to put on it. 🙂

  6. I always think about making an omelet but I’m usually in such a rush that I can’t get that fancy with my eggs. Now if only I could figure out how to get by on less sleep… 😉

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