Experimenting with Tortilla Espanola
I fell in love with tortilla espanola when I spent a few weeks in Spain during a high school summer trip. We spent about 10 days travelling all around Spain and then we settled in Salamanca to study at the Universidad Pontificia for the remainder of the trip. During our travels to different cities, tortilla was a staple on the table. While seemingly simple...it's just eggs, potatoes, onion and some seasonings cooked together...it's taste is so delicious. And tortilla proved a welcome savior to me when well-meaning Spaniards wanted us to taste blood sausage and other shall we say interesting meats. Even if I just had a few small bites of the meats that scared me (remember I was about 16 at the time and had a less adventurous palate), I'd happily dive into the tortilla espanola so they could see my appreciation for their cooking.
Many of the standard recipes for tortilla espanola call for 4 large potatoes. In my mind, this is a bit too much. I used 4 large potatoes in my tortilla this week, and while it came out delicious, I think the egg to potato ratio is a little off. I prefer my tortilla to be held together well by the egg and be generously studded with potatoes. The tortilla I cooked this week is more potato-heavy than I'd like, but still good. So I've played with the recipe a bit since then and here's my take on tortilla espanola, using fewer potatoes.
3 tablespoons olive oil
3 large potatoes, peeled and cubed
1 white onion, chopped
salt and pepper to taste
Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a large skillet over medium-low heat. Fry potatoes and onion in oil for about 15 minutes. Cook until potatoes are relatively soft and lightly browned. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Beat eggs together in a large bowl. When the potatoes seem ready, pour the potato and onion mixture into the eggs and mix together. Here's the part that I think is critical. I like my tortilla to be really held together well by the eggs. If you are at this step and don't think you have enough egg to fully surround the potato and onion micture when you put it in the pan, add another beaten egg. Again, it is just my personal preference to have an "eggier" tortilla, still full of potatoes and onions, but largely bound by eggs. It strikes me as closer to what I ate in Spain. If you feel you have just the right ratio of egg to potatoes to onion, then move ahead to the next step happily.
Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet over medium-low heat. Spread mixture evenly over the bottom of the pan. Cook for about 10 minutes without stirring. Then place a large plate over the pan and flip the pan to transfer the tortilla espanola onto the plate. You'll want your tortilla to be golden brown on the cooked side. Carefully slide tortilla back into pan and cook the other side for 5 to 10 minutes.
This recipe will make a large tortilla and it should serve 6. To be tradional, serve cold.
My tortilla looks a tad rustic, which I like. It came out more potatoey than I'd hoped, but it still tastes delicious and this was a good way to play with the recipe a bit and figure out how to perfect it for next time.