Today I am sharing a recipe I learned how to make studying abroad in Spain – Tortilla Española! I actually studied in Spain twice during my college career, once for a summer in Sevilla and once for a semester in Alicante. But I have fonder food memories from my time in Sevilla because my host mom my was an excellent cook. Her name was Anna and she lived alone in a small apartment. Her husband had passed away a few years before and hosting exchange students was something he really enjoyed, so she continued hosting after his passing. I stayed with her for 7 weeks, most of June and July between my sophomore and junior years of college.
Since it was the middle of summer it was HOT and her apartment didn’t have air conditioning. I would have school until early afternoon and then I would return for “La Comida”, basically the equivalent of our dinner, but served in the mid-afternoon. Because of the heat we would often have gazpacho, (another favorite of mine) a cold vegetable soup as our 1st course (pictured below) before our main meal. One of my favorites was her Tortilla Española – directly translated “Spanish Tortilla”, it is also in the picture below, but cut off all the way on the right.
It is a very popular Spanish dish made with potatoes, onions and eggs. It is very versatile, it can be eaten hot as a meal or served cold as a tapa. Here in America we would think of it more as a breakfast dish, but in Spain, in my experience, they would never eat this dish for breakfast.
(me with Anna and a visitor at her dining table enjoying la comida)
- 1 cup olive oil
- 8 white potatoes, peeled and sliced thin
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 10 eggs
- salt and pepper to taste
- Heat 1/4 cup olive oil in a large frying pan over medium heat
- Add potatoes in small batches, cooking 12-15 minutes until soft
- Meanwhile in a small frying pan heat 1/4 cup olive oil
- Add onions and cook 10 minutes until soft
- Set onions aside
- Spoon cooked potatoes onto paper towels to absorb excess oil
- In a large bowl whisk together eggs, salt and pepper
- Add the potatoes and onions and mix to coat in egg mixture
- Add 1/2 cup of oil to the frying pan and heat to medium heat
- Pour egg/potato/onion mixture into frying pan
- Reduce heat to medium-low and Cook 5 minutes
- Using a plate to assist, flip the omelette
- Cook 3-5 more minutes
- Slide out of frying pan onto serving plate
- I added a 1/2 cup of tomatoes and goat cheese, you can also add ham, spinach, really whatever you like as long as you follow the base above.
Anna would be appalled with 2 things: 1. how little Spanish I can remember and 2. that I added tomatoes and goat cheese to her tried and true recipe. Taste wise I recommend these add-ins, but the goat cheese burnt making for an ugly presentation…
(everything prepped and ready)
(finished product – a little burnt but still a lotta delicious)