Lately it’s been a lot about Spain in my mind, I love Spaniards’ eating habits. It surely has to do with the fact that I have visited one of my dearest friends in Barcelona a few months ago, and that I really enjoyed my time in this beautiful city. Also, I’ve been shown nice places with great stories, and I’ve been taken to great eateries where I had both nice tapas or original pinchos (or pinxtos as they write it over there). And of course, I could not be in Spain and not eat their famous Tortilla Española, aka Tortilla de Patatas. The only regret I have is that I didn’t think of asking anyone there how to make a real Spanish Tortilla (I must have been too busy eating it, and my brain probably shut down for a while).
Besides, it’s been some time now that I have been following the blog of Mimi, that is called Whereismimiyu, in which Mimi tells us how she deals with food and travels as a Spanish girl living in South Korea. It’s as interesting as inspiring, and above all she recently had the genius idea to post her recipe of Tortilla Española learnt from her dad, which is great for me because I finally got the chance to reach out to a great yet easy recipe that’s directly coming from a real Spanish foodie!
Because I got a little in trouble with time management today, and because we love spices at home, I have adapted Mimi’s recipe to my taste, to my limited available cooking time, and to the fact that we are not 4 people to eat tonight but only 2, so ingredients and quantities slightly vary in my recipe. Here is the result. I find it pretty nice and it tastes great too!
Even though cooking directions are pretty easy to follow, I advise not skipping any step of the process, otherwise your chances of ruining the look of your tortilla will be sky high! Furthermore, if you have on hand the right required material – especially the double-pan that the Spanish are using to flip the tortilla – it will be much easier to reach a success with this dish in terms of looks. I don’t have a double-pan. So I used a simple plate to flip my tortilla from the pan and be able to cook it on both sides as it should. And yes, for your information, I’ve managed to burn one or two fingers in the process. It almost had me drop the tortilla and spill it all over the floor, but somehow I had the weirdest reflex to put it all back together and save our dinner. Don’t ask me why, but I think it’s because I might be a ninja or something of the kind. Deep down in my guts.(lol)
First advice, you shall cook your potatoes skin on. Beside the fact that it is a better cooking technique, you should acknowledge as well the health benefits of such a practice. Sugar levels are rising much higher when potatoes are boiled skin off; people with diabetes are even taught to boil their potatoes skin on for that matter. Slicing potatoes therefore comes after boiling, and shall be done thoroughly (although the width of potato slices does not matter, thickness must be as regular as possible, thanks!)
Second advice, and here I’m sorry for all the people who are trying to cut on fat including myself, you need to regularly pour your fair amount of oil in the pan if you ever want to be able to un-mold your tortilla from the pan, twice (to flip it, then serve it on a plate). This is partly due to the weight of the whole dish, because potatoes don’t weigh like feathers, trust me.
Third, honestly, when it comes to flipping that tortilla upside down, feel like you ARE a ninja. If you are hesitant, and you don’t trust yourself while operating the flip, your kitchen’s going to be a bloody mess!
Fourth, last, and not least, wait up a half hour before cutting the tortilla española into nicely shaped squares or triangles. After you’ve plated your tortilla on a serving dish, the eggs will continue to agglomerate for a little while, and then further cutting will be cleaner. I liked to top it this time with a little bit of hot salsa mexicana to add some extra flavor, but that’s totally optional and I hope Mimi is not jumping up-and-down saying I’m crazy to waste my tortilla or so, because it did add a nice flavor to my overall dinner tonight.
Ingredients (for 2 pax):
- 2 big potatoes
- 1/2 onion
- 4 eggs
- sunflower oil
- salt, pepper and a bit of chili powder if you want to spice it up
- salsa mexicana for the topping if you really want it hot.
- Boil the potatoes, skin on. No need to boil them till they’re cooked through. Actually the center will have to remain a bit hard so that the next steps can be processed smoothly. Put the potatoes in a saucepan of boiling water and start processing the other ingredients. Boiling time shall not exceed the time of frying the onion.
- Mince and fry the onion with oil in a small to medium size pan with medium-high edges.
- In a medium sized bowl, whisk the eggs. Add salt, pepper and chili if desired.
- Add the onion to the eggs and combine.
- Get the potatoes out of the boiling water. Peel the skin off and slice them up, keeping in mind the thickness should be equal for all pieces and no more than 2 mm each.
- Heat oil in the same pan and roughly fry the potatoes on both sides in 2 or 3 separate batches.
- Combine potato slices with the eggs and onion mixture.
- Heat oil in the pan again, and pour everything in it. Cook on medium heat then lower the heat if the bottom is cooking fast and the top a little too slow.
- With a spatula, check that the bottom of the tortilla can easily detach from the pan.
- Slide the tortilla to a plate a little bit larger than the pan.
- Do your ninja moves, stick the pan face down to the plate that contains the tortilla and that you’re holding with your other hand, and flip it over. Do it quick, really ninja-style, otherwise it will go everywhere out but in the pan.
- Cook up this other side for a few minutes, and slide it on a serving dish.
- Wait for about a half hour to cut the tortilla de patatas into pieces, and top it with hot salsa mexicana if you like that.
Created and Written by Sophie Rebibo-Halimi. © 2015, All Rights Reserved.