Recipe: Tortilla Español

By Larissa Phillips

Even at the very end of the shopping week, when all the delicious "top shelf" goodies are long gone, it's easy to have a few eggs and some potatoes and onions leftover. This delicious soul-feeding recipe is an excellent defense against the wolf in your bare cupboard.


  • 5 or 6 medium-sized potatoes (Yukon gold are perfect)

  • 1 yellow onion

  • 6 eggs

  • Olive oil


  1. Heat about 1-1/2 cups of olive oil in a large heavy-bottomed skillet. (Don't worry; most of the oil is left over at the end. It can be strained and reused for future tortillas.)

  2. Slice the potatoes thinly. (It's traditional to peel them; I don't.) If you have a mandolin, this can be done quickly. Toss with 2 teaspoons of salt while you wait for the oil to heat.

  3. When the oil is hot enough that it sizzles when a potato is dipped in it, gently slide the potatoes into the oil. Lower the heat to medium and cook gently for about 10 minutes. Try not to let the potatoes get brown and crisp. (Those that brown can be fed as appetizers to children.)

  4. While the potatoes cook, chop the onions and set up a strainer over a bowl, or line a plate with paper towels. When the potatoes are soft, use a slotted spoon or tongs to remove them from the pan and set them to drain in the strainer or on the paper towels.

  5. While the potatoes drain, slip the onions gently into the oil and cook them for about 10 minutes, or until soft and translucent. Use a slotted spoon and let them drain with the potatoes.

  6. Crack the eggs into a medium-size bowl and mix well. Add the potatoes and onions, and gently mix, trying not to break the potatoes. Pour the olive oil from the pan (strain and save, if desired), wipe out the pan, and return just one tablespoon of oil to the pan.

  7. When the oil is hot enough to sizzle, pour the egg mixture into the pan. After a minute, lower the heat to medium-low. As the edges firm up and brown, gently lift with a fork and allow the uncooked egg to run underneath. When the edges are set and the inside is still runny, give the pan a shake to loosen the tortilla. With hands protected by pot holders, place a plate on top of the pan, and in one quick move, invert the pan. The tortilla should fall onto the plate. Slide the tortilla back into the pan and cook for another few minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out dry. Slide onto a plate and slice like a pie. Excellent served hot, cold or room temperature.

- Larissa Phillips

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