After I made this for the first time, I quickly realised that it is definitely a recipe worth mastering. This Spanish-style omelette (or tortilla) is delicious eaten hot, at room temp or cold. It’s really good served with a side of salad and smoked salmon; and it’s a fab way to pimp up your grazing boards when entertaining – just cut up in cubes and enjoy with a lovely glass of Rioja. Yum!
I was 22 when I visited Barcelona for the first time. I remember being so captivated by the Catalan colours and vibrant, eclectic culture, the sounds, the smells and the beautiful, interesting and diverse mix of people wandering the streets. I was especially blown away by how late Barcelonans eat, drink and party. I recall my best friend and I trying to find somewhere to eat at 8pm only to find all the restaurants empty and turning up to a nightclub at 10pm only to be told that it didn’t open for another 2 hours! Fun times.
I love doing the Tapas thing in Spain. And while my eyes tend to dart straight to the croquettas, patatas bravas and warm chorizo on every menu…. I do love sampling how every restaurant does a traditional omelette or tortilla. Golden and luscious and savoury, it’s so good to have with a dish of olives, some crusty bread smeared with fresh tomato and a beautiful glass of Spanish Rioja.
The traditional way of making this omelette uses quite a bit of olive oil. One recipe I found called for 300mls for a 2-3 person serving! Ummmm…. ‘Straight to the hips!’ as my brother would say. This recipe that I found on BBC Food UK uses less oil, but I promise it’s still delicious. The key is patience (it takes about 40 minutes to cook), quality ingredients and really good olive oil (Spanish, if you have it).
This is a good dish to have as part of your classic hits. I mean when do you ever not have onions, eggs and potatoes in the house??
- 1 medium-sized onion sliced in thin half moons
- 4 small desiree potatoes peeled and thinly sliced in rounds
- 3 tablespoons good extra virgin olive oil
- 6 small free-range eggs (or 5 medium)
- Salt and freshly cracked black pepper for seasoning
A non-stick frying pan around 20cm in diameter works best for this dish. You will also need a lid that fits or a large plate that covers the pan.
Place the sliced potato rounds on one half of a clean tea towel. Fold over the tea towel and pat the potatoes dry as much as possible.
Heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil in the frying pan and when it’s hot, add the potatoes and onions. Toss them around in the oil to get a good coating, then turn the heat right down to its lowest setting. Add a generous sprinkling of salt and pepper, put a lid on the frying pan and let the onions and potatoes cook gently for 20 minutes, or until tender. Turn them over halfway through and shake the pan from time to time, as they are not supposed to brown very much but just gently stew in the oil.
Meanwhile, whisk the eggs lightly in a large bowl. Add a little more seasoning to the eggs. When the onions and potatoes are cooked, quickly transfer them to the eggs in the bowl.
Put the frying pan back on the heat, add the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil and turn the heat back up to medium. Then mix the potato and eggs thoroughly before pouring the whole lot into the frying pan and turning the heat down to its lowest setting immediately. This process will take another 20-25 minutes to cook slowly, uncovered.
Every now and then skim around the edge gently with a spatula to give it a round edge and help with the flipping process. When there is virtually no liquid egg left on the surface of the omelette, turn it over. To do this, place a large plate over the pan and turn over so that the omelette is on the plate. Put the pan back on the heat and use the spatula to gently ease the omelette back in. Give it about 5 minutes more, then turn the heat off and leave it for a further 10 minutes to settle. It should then be cooked through but still moist in the centre.
Serve hot or cold. Cut in wedges for a meal or in cubes for a snack plate.
This omelette is definitely worth the extra bit of love and attention. It’s a great meat-free snack or meal and so more-ish. It definitely doesn’t last long in our house.
Mrs. Magic Pantry XO