January 20, 2013
omelet (noun)
\AHM-lut\ Hear it!
What does it mean?
: beaten eggs cooked without stirring and served folded in half
How do you use it?
Carole liked to fill her omelets with fresh seasonal ingredients, such as spinach in spring, zucchini in summer, and fennel in fall.
Are you a word wiz?

We can trace "omelet" (which is also spelled "omelette") back to its Latin roots in the word "lamina." What do you think "lamina" means?

An omelet resembles a thin plate, and that is what "lamina" means. The Romans used "lamella," a form of "lamina," to mean "thin metal plate." French speakers borrowed the word as "lemelle" and used it to mean "blade of a knife." Over time, the French word became "alemelle," then "alumelle," and later "alumette." It also acquired the meaning "dish made with beaten eggs," since such a dish resembled a thin plate or blade. In time, French speakers began to switch the "l" and "m" sounds so that "alumette" became "amelette." It finally became "omelette." The word entered English in the 1600s, when an omelet was described as a "pancake of eggs."
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