Colorado cuisine is less a cuisine than a hodgepodge of dishes that highlight the history of the state and its environmental riches. Once a part of Mexico, Colorado cuisine still has some of the vibrant flavors of the southwest, but to them it added the simpler fare of gold-rusher and the varied cuisines of the European immigrants who followed them. One of its most distinct dishes, green chili, has evolved to take on Italian influences, for example. Colorado is also famous for its trout, lamb and beef and, above all, rocky mountain oysters - bull's testicles. Colorado has also made culinary history through its vibrant hotel and restaurant scene, as well as the annual Food & Wine festival in Aspen.
For my quick sojourn into Coloradoan cuisine, I made:
A Denver omelet, also known as a western omelet, is an omelet with chopped onions, bell peppers, ham and cheese. It's easy to make and delicious, and while usually eaten for breakfast - it works just as well for a quick lunch or dinner.
While the history of the Denver omelet is unclear, it might have originated as a sandwich or might have evolved from Chinese egg foo yong. While it's not exclusive to Colorado, it's taken on the city's name and it's a favorite in the state.
- 3 large eggs
- 1 Tbsp milk
- salt & pepper to taste
- 2 tsp olive oil
- 2 tsp butter
- 2 Tbsp finely chopped onion
- 2 Tbsp chopped green bell pepper
- 2 Tbsp chopped red bell pepper
- 1/4 cup diced ham
- 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
In a small bowl, beat the eggs with the milk and salt and pepper to taste until combined. Set aside.
Heat a skillet over medium heat. Add the oil and butter and allow to melt and cover the bottom of the pan. Add the onion, bell peppers and ham and cook until the ham starts to caramelize and the vegetables soften, about 3 to 4 minutes. Pour the egg mixture on top, making sure it fills the whole skillet. Cook for a couple of minutes then, using a spatula, dislodge the edges and allow any runny egg to spread to the sides.
Sprinkle the cheese on top of the omelet, lower heat to medium low and cover with another pan. Cook for about 5 minutes, or until the eggs set and the cheese melts. Uncover and fold one side of the omelet on the other. Remove from the heat and serve.
Adapted from Holly's recipe at Spend with Pennies
Cuisines from other states: American, Arizonan,Californian, Connecticuter, Delawarean, Floridian, Hawaiian, Idahoan, Illinoisan, Kansan.
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