Monday, January 9, 2012

tortilla española

So it's a new year and already the tables have turned!  Heather has been working a lot more lately and I've had more free time in the evenings, so that means I get to experiment with whatever odd cravings I have until she gets home.  Following our vichyssoise souffle, I was craving more potato and onion combinations.

Inspired by menús del día we would enjoy in Madrid a few years back, I started looking up tortilla española recipes (tortilla can actually mean omelet in Spanish).  These are usually not what people think of when you say tortilla, but I can guarantee you that once you make one, you soon will not forget the simple wonders of this dish.  Tortillas can be found at Spanish tapas bars and restaurants around the clock, as their basic and sturdy ingredients make them the perfect snack or foundation.  Scroll down to see the recipe!

Tortilla Española, or tortilla de patate (adapted from FineCooking)
1-3/4 cups vegetable oil for frying (I used sunflower oil because of a higher smoke point)
1-3/4 lb. Yukon Gold potatoes peeled (other low starch potatoes can be substituted)
2-1/4 tsp. coarse salt
12 to 14 oz. onions (2 to 3 medium), diced
5 medium cloves garlic, coarsely chopped
6 large eggs
1/8 tsp. freshly ground black pepper1/8 tsp. good Paprika (I used sweet spanish paprika)

You can find a detailed rundown of instructions here.  There's also a great video on flipping the tortilla (arguably the only difficult part) here.  Don't forget to fold the edges under using a soft spatula after you flip to give it that classic rounded edge!

The other great aspect of a tortilla is that the basic foundation can easily be spiced up by adding a few ingredients while the eggs begin to cook.  I threw in some cilantro and diced jalapenos to add some extra color and flavor.

Once the tortilla is made, I would recommend letting it set for an hour, as this will help the eggs to further set and the flavors to fully meld.  In the meantime, you could make a fantastic sauce to go with the tortilla.  I chose the classic Spanish tomato sauce, sofrito.  And I can guarantee you this dish makes some of the best leftovers you can imagine.  You can also throw a slice between two pieces of baguette and you have yourself a classic bocadillo!

Salud and enjoy!

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