As an egg-dotter Bengali, who grew up in North India, I’ve been so used to the infinite loop of “how to combine potatoes with eggs!” That’s something I was often fed as a child and now I feed my kids. There’re both comforting and curb my cravings. Easy, quick thing to do any day!
So what did I do so far? Dozen plus types of egg curries – yes, of course! Cracked eggs on your fried potatoes – aha yes! Scrambled some eggs in a soupy potato curry – done — it’s one of Ma’s favorite everyday recipes and my soul-food! Fries in an omelette — made and tasted so many times. Curried omelettes with potatoes too – yes, ’tis a classic bengali preparation. Potatoes and eggs — I have fried them both, baked them and mixed them together endlessly. Egg-xactly!! So whats left? I didn’t know.
I remember watching something on a television cook show, a good several years back, when I was was in India and in Bangalore. They telecasted a cook-show on breakfast bread. Can’t remember who hosted it and what they called it. Those were the legendary days of Sanjeev Kapoor and Tarla Dalal. I had never heard of a Vikas Khanna or a Ranveer Brar or Atul Kochhar then! Those days we also had a couple television channels that caught hold of a Bollywood celebrity who also loved to cook that something someday and have them over at their studio (or get a cameraman and a host into their house) and broadcast, as they worked on a fancy recipe. Yet again, my brain has this crazy habit of registering only what it should, and sponging out and let go everything else! Seriously!!! So, while I may love a song, I may not recall which film it came from. If I like a movie, I’d know the story, but never the scenes one after the other or the dialogues…errr except those one or two that the social media immortalizes and I’d see/hear too much of it to forget!! And no I don’t complain. I love this tendency of my brain — my natural filter…Of blissfully forgetting what it should. 🙂
Now back to the cook show….
So this lady celebrity (whoever that was, God bless her!), was inspired from the most common breakfast of bread-butter-omelette and cereals-milk. She thought of combining them. She cut out a circle from bread, toasted it with butter and poured in the whisked egg and threw in some crunchy cornflakes…and it was done! Cornflakes in eggs? It wasn’t a very bad idea though. Only if those cornflakes would be replaced by some fresh crisp potato chips! Wouldn’t that be awesome, I had thought. Why not? When we dream and imagine, we usually tend to fantasize about what we love. And what’s not to love about potato chips? The idea of chips seemed pleasing. I had first made them using my usual plain Indian omelettes (with onions, green chillies and cilantro) and crumbled some chips on to them — and they were fantastic!
Then, I did a quick google-search (my e-life line!) to curiously look if anything anywhere existed about an omelette made with potato chips? I didn’t expect much though. But guess what? I did find so many recipes and they were all mostly about a popular Parsi preparation called “Wafers or Chips par Eeda“. Western style potato chips are called “wafer” in Parsi. And eeda in that language means “eggs”. Some Parsis like to use a different spelling and write “Ida” for eggs. They both mean the same. Traditionally, Parsis add some ginger-garlic to these omelette too! I like them either ways — with or without them. And have always loved them for brunch. They make lovely wholesome meals with toasted breads or a soup. These “chips in eggs” are so good. You’ll keep making them forever and often. The crispy crunch of the chips popping out of the seasoned and comforting eggs. What else do you call goodness? My kids and S love them too much!!
And what better occasion to post this recipe — today is Jamshedi Navroz, the Parsi New year!!! It marks the first day of the first month in Zoroastrian calendar. I’ve always found the Parsi culture and their love for food intriguing. I won’t say I’ve had enough from their unique cuisine yet. But I am getting there. I am soaking it all on the go and learning more. When the Parsis called India home hundreds of years back, they also accepted the Indian way of life and blended theirs with ours. Their cuisine stands out as an exemplary evidence. Parsi food is a beautiful weave that borrows the essence of the Gujarati cuisine to amalgamate with the elements from their ancient Iranian root principles of food. Though meat eating is dominant among this community, they are known to love eggs very much. They would make something and beautifully top it with a fried or scrambled or any other egg! Then there are also these amazing Parsi omelettes with a load of veggies in them!
“Wafer par Eedu” is a variation and is adapted from the classic Parsi preparation called “Sali ar Eedu” (Sali in Parsi means fried fine sticks of potato). What I precisely like the most about this recipe is that it’s very unique and flexible. You can add absolutely any kind of chips — plain or flavored. Whisk your eggs and add to make the omelette. Or crack and drop them on the chips for a sunny-side up! Go wild and add-on a bit of the veggies you like. Alternatively, any type of a potato can be used here — Potato fries or hash browns or seasoned potato cubes — they are all equally good and fitting. Again, make them with ginger-garlic or without — they both taste good. This recipe can also accommodate tomatoes (well, if you prefer them in yours). Season your “Wafer par Eedu” with your favorite herbs and seasoning salt. I used cilantro and shredded cheese. To honor Navroz and to align my recipe to the Parsi cooking principle of “Khatu-Mithu” (meaning a blend of sweet and sour), I used BBQ flavored potato chips today. Prepare and serve with your favorite toasted bread, hot sauce and lemon wedges. Relish and share with family and friends. And did I not tell you that you can also cut out and remove a circle from a bread, toast it in butter, both sides, then add the whisked eggs and chips in the “well” and season and cook till set and done! The bread and the eggy-chips would all come together on your plate!!! 😉
Here’s wishing a happy, prosperous Navroz to all Parsi friends and a bright summer day to everyone else!
Serves 1 – 2
- 2 Eggs
- 3 handful potato chips of your choice (I used BBQ chips)
- 3 tbsp of finely chopped onions
- 1 tbsp of grated fresh ginger (or ginger paste)
- 1/2 tbsp fine sliced garlic (or garlic paste)
- 2 Indian hot green chillies – chopped (Optional)
- 1 tbsp light cooking oil
- 1 tbsp shredded cilantro or coriander leaves to garnish (or your favorite fresh herb)
- 1 tbsp shredded cheese of your choice — I used cheddar and mozzarella (Optional)
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Heat oil in a pan over medium heat and add onions. Saute till they are fried for 1 minute.
- Add ginger, garlic and green chillies and fry for another half a minute.
- Add the chips. Crush them slightly, if the chips are large. (do not fry/cook them – we don’t want them soggy!)
- Whisk the eggs and adjust salt (go very light on salt, since the chips are salty enough. I usually don’t have to use extra salt.). Pour them over the chips, as evenly as possible. Swirl the pan once slightly, to let the runny eggs spread through the chips. Switch stove to medium-low heat (so the eggs don’t burn) and cook for a little bit till the eggs have just set. The chips should still be crunchy.
- Take off from stove and transfer to a serving platter. Garnish with cilantro, cheese and some fresh ground pepper. Serve them beside toasted bread, lemon wedges and your favorite hot sauce or ketchup.