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Swiss Chard Omelette (La Trouchia)

La trouchia is a style of vegetable omelette unique to the Nice area, where it is made exclusively with Swiss chard. One is tempted to draw comparisons with the Italian frittata, and a keen eye will also spot that it bears a distinct resemblance to the tians (layered vegetable dishes) found in Provence.

Ingredients:

  • 6 Tbs. olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 1 lb. Swiss chard, stems removed and
      leaves coarsely shredded
  • 7 eggs
  • 1 scant cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 2 Tbs. chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 8 to 10 small black olives

Directions:

In a nonstick fry pan over medium heat, warm 3 Tbs. of the olive oil. Add the onion and sauté until softened, about 1 minute. Add the Swiss chard and cook, stirring, just until the chard has wilted. Reduce the heat to low and cook, stirring often, until tender, 5 to 6 minutes total. Set aside to cool.

In a bowl, using a fork, beat the eggs until blended. Stir in half of the cheese and all of the garlic and parsley. Season with salt and pepper, then add the cooled chard mixture and stir briefly to mix.

Wipe out the fry pan with a paper towel and return to low heat. Add the remaining 3 Tbs. olive oil. When the oil is hot, add the egg mixture and stir gently with the fork. Stop stirring as soon as the eggs start to set, then allow the pan to rest on the heat until the eggs start to become firm, 3 to 4 minutes. Place a plate over the pan and, holding the plate and pan together, invert them and lift off the pan. Slip the omelette back into the pan and return to low heat. Sprinkle the remaining cheese evenly over the top and cook, without disturbing, for 2 to 3 minutes.

Slide the omelette from the pan onto a serving plate and dot the top with the olives. Cut into wedges and serve immediately.
Serves 4 to 6.
Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Savoring Series, Savoring Provence, by Diane Holuigue (Time-Life Books, 2002).