Make it at Home – The Oasis Cafe & Bakery’s Italian Scramble
We’re making breakfast this month!!
If you’ve been reading Sarasota Bites for any length of time, you will know that we love Sarasota restaurant history/trivia. Sarasota has a lot of it. If you’re a first-time reader, welcome to the show.
Let’s start off our March Make it at Home with a quick game. What do these three longtime Sarasota restaurants all have in common? Ready, here you go, The Broken Egg, The Serving Spoon, and The Oasis Café and Bakery.I want to give you some time, but we’ve got a recipe to get to so get your guess in quick.
Give up? The correct answer is, they were all started by the same Sarasota family. I know, it seems almost impossible that one family (and a small one at that) could have started three of Sarasota’s most iconic breakfast and lunch spots. But it’s true.
Meet the Palermo Family (cue Family Feud intro music!). Chef Jim Palermo, his wife Melissa, and their three children, have all been involved in the family business, making and serving delicious food to hungry Sarasota diners. And over the years (37 of them), they have excelled at it in a way that would make other would-be restaurant operators jealous. It’s a difficult business. And it’s really a Palermo team effort.
Meet Jim. He’s the Chef. He looks like he knows what he’s doing, right? That’s because he does. He’s making this month’s Make it at Home recipe. It’s the Oasis Café and Bakery’s, Italian Scramble.
When the Palermo’s started The Broken Egg back in 1985, this was part of the cooking gear.
Looks like Jim has upgraded just a bit since then. But even with the fanciest cooking equipment you can buy, there is still a very large component of operator expertise at play. The kitchen is Jim’s domain, and he is the master of it!
Jim’s wife, Melissa, runs the front of the house, along with their daughter, Ashley. And believe me, it takes all three of them to make their breakfast and lunch place the success that it is. And it is successful. Just try and get in on a Sunday morning and you will immediately see what I’m talking about.
This month I’m getting a little change of pace. I’m making breakfast! That’s great for me, I LOVE breakfast. Somebody once said it’s the most important meal of the day and I am certainly not going to argue that point.
I’m sure you’re ready to get out your skillet and get cooking. But hang on a minute. We’ve made a short cooking video to get you in the mood. Sit back for two minutes and enjoy the show!
Looks easy enough, right? OK, I will admit that this one was easier for me than some of our past recipes. I’ve got a bunch of experience cooking eggs. If Jim ever needs a “Chef for a Day,” I could probably do one shift.
Before we give you the recipe, we’ve got a favor to ask. If you make this at your home, take a picture and post it to our dineSarasota Facebook Page. We would love to see how yours turned out!
Now it’s your turn to give the Italian Scramble a whirl.
OASIS CAFÉ & BAKERY – ITALIAN SCRAMBLE
2 4-5 oz. links of Italian sausage, cooked and medium diced
1 medium Vidalia or other sweet onion, medium diced
1 medium red pepper, medium diced
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
4 large eggs beaten well
2 Tbsp. olive oil
Heat medium nonstick pan. Add olive oil, onions, and peppers. Sauté until onions are translucent and peppers have a little color on them. Add cooked diced sausage.
When the sausage has warmed, add eggs and cheese. Finish cooking until eggs are set. The cheese will keep the whole dish soft and gooey. If you prefer more well-done eggs, cook them separately, then add cheese.
Serve with your choice of fresh fruit sliced, Florida tomatoes, toast, or English Muffin.
** RECIPE NOTES **
This recipe can be cut back for one or doubled for a larger brunch gathering.
You can use one hot and one mild sausage, your choice based on your spice tolerance.
You can also use turkey or chicken Italian sausage based on your preferences.
Here’s how mine turned out.
Let’s break things down a little. The prep is simple. Just a little dicing and some browning. You can do that. You are not going to destroy your kitchen trying to make this dish either. That means you’ll still have time after making it to enjoy the rest of your lovely Sarasota day without having to power wash your kitchen. This is not expensive to make. You probably have half of the ingredients in your home kitchen already.
Of course, we need to compare our amateur effort to the pros. Let’s take a look at how Jim’s Italian Scramble turned out.
Looks like he did a great job too!
Here are some tasting, cooking, and plating notes for you
- The restaurant version was cooked a little looser than mine. I liked that.
- Jim used multicolored peppers. I like the visual of that better than just the red.
- He also used red onion. I liked that too!
- Mine tasted really close to theirs. Really close. I’m pretty proud of that!
- Yes, I could use a little work on my plating (it’s on my list!)
How easy is this to make? Let’s put it in a way that’s simple to understand!
VERDICT: YES, You can Make This at Home. You’ve got this! This is one that pretty much any home cook can perfect. I love that! It would be a nice brunch dish to serve if you have a small to medium-sized gathering. That being said, there is no substitute for having Jim cook one up for you. After all, he’s got more than just an electric griddle now, he’s got a REAL kitchen. And knows how to use it!
The Oasis Cafe & Bakery (3542 S. Osprey Ave. (941) 957-1214)
A note (and a request) – If you own, or are a chef at a Sarasota restaurant, and would like to have your recipe featured in a future edition of Make it at Home, please get in touch with us through our Facebook page, our dineSarasota.com website, or send us an email. We want to cook your dish!!