One dish that I came across literally everywhere in Spain was Tortilla Española, also known as the Spanish omelette. I found it served as a side dish in paella restaurants, in tapas bars with other small eats, and even stuffed into a croissant for breakfast at small cafés. Because this dish is insanely simple, and is traditionally made with only 5 ingredients—eggs, potatoes, onions, olive oil, and salt—I couldn’t wait to come back home and make it in my own kitchen, and now, share with y’all how to make this as well :)
This dish can be served cold or hot, as a simple lunch with some salad, or for breakfast in place of your usual omelette. It’s blasphemy to the Spanish to add anything else inside this omelette besides potatoes and onions, but you can definitely get more creative in the comfort of your own kitchen by adding your favorite omelette ingredients—just make sure there aren’t any Spanish people watching you :)
Unfortunately, as you can see from the photo above, the sides of my omelette didn’t turn out to be very smooth and I had some egg jutting out at the edges. If you want to avoid making my mistake, make sure you tuck in the egg mixture on the sides of the pan as you’re cooking.
To make this dish, all you need is 5 simple ingredients: eggs, potatoes, onions, olive oil, and salt. If you don’t have any onions, feel free to leave them out (including onions in your Tortilla Española is a very controversial topic).
You might be shocked at the large amount of olive oil we’ll need to use to initially fry the onions and potatoes. But don’t fret, we’ll drain out the oil from the potatoes and onions and reuse it for frying the omelette later on.
Cooking a Spanish omelette requires a lot of confidence when you’re flipping your pan upside down onto a plate. If you do it fast and definitively, you’ll have no problem flipping the egg out of the pan and won’t make a mess. A lightweight, 8-inch pan will also help in making the flipping easier, as well as making a small enough omelette to work as a side dish.
Tortilla Española is also perfect as a filling inside sandwiches. In Seville, I had breakfast at a café called Salt & Sugar that served the omelette inside a croissant. So at home, I also tried stuffing a slice of the omelette into a toasted croissant with some sliced salami (though traditionally, Spanish people will eat it with sliced chorizo, which I didn’t have).
Tortilla Española (Spanish Omelette)
Ingredients (Makes 2 8-inch omelettes)
- 2 potatoes, peeled
- 1 medium onion
- 6 eggs
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 2 tsp salt
- Chopped chives for garnish (optional)
Takes , Makes 2 eight-inch omelettes.
- Slice the onion into thin half-moon pieces. Peel the potatoes and also slice them thinly into half-moon pieces, about the same size as the onions.
- Heat up ~1/2 cup of olive oil in a skillet, and toss in the onions before the potatoes. Adding the onions first will bring out their sweetness to infuse with the potatoes later.
- Add the potatoes and simmer with the onions in the olive oil for about 10 minutes, or until they are slightly crispy and browned.
- Crack 6 eggs into a large bowl and whisk them together thoroughly.
- Put a strainer on top of a heat-proof bowl and strain the oil away from the onions and potatoes. Set aside the onions and potatoes to cool before adding them to the egg mixture to avoid scrambling the eggs.
- After they've cooled down, add the potatoes and onions into the egg mixture and combine with about 2 tsp of salt.
- Heat some of the leftover strained oil in an 8-inch nonstick skillet, making sure to coat the bottom of the pan entirely. Add half of the egg mixture and stir gently to cook the eggs evenly.
- Add a lid on top of the skillet and let the eggs cook for about 2-3 minutes.
- Put a plate on top of the skillet and flip the skillet upside down onto the plate, so that the omelette is cooked side up. Make sure to do this away from the stove to prevent accidents.
- Add some more oil to the pan and slide the omlette from the plate back into the pan, uncooked side down.
- Cook for another 2-3 minutes, and flip the omelette upside down onto a plate once again.
- Garnish with chopped chives if you'd like, and serve as a side dish, with a salad, or inside a croissant.
It’s been a while since I posted any food content on the blog or made a cooking video. I hope you enjoyed this recipe and that you try this in your own kitchen! Let me know how it turns out for you by tagging @cinders_zhang on Instagram! Support me by saving this recipe on Pinterest, and subscribing to my Youtube channel :)