Tortilla de Patatas


Tortilla 1

This picture represents my perfect Friday night feast! Feet up, glass of something red and full bodied in hand, let the  weekend begin! (I suppose if I tried hard I could manage to enjoy this too at lunchtime somewhere sunny and warm !)  There is a Spanish theme going on here – I may have mentioned before that I go to Spanish classes every week so trying out the food is all part of the homework! Someone has to do it. In the photo along with the olives, sundried tomatoes, manchego cheese(my absolute favourite of all cheeses) and serrano ham, there is some Spanish tortilla or Spanish omelette. When I was growing up this was  something we had regularly in our house – my mother had spent a year on a scholarship in Galicia in Northern Spain when she was studying Spanish in UCD so there was always a Spanish influence in our house….food, wine, art etc. This was how we got to try what was known as ‘Spanish omelette’ in our house. No matter how bare the ‘larder’ was you could nearly always bet that there were eggs and potatoes in stock  so it was a great stand-by and we all loved it. It was also served up at all family get-togethers served in squares on cocktail sticks with salami, cocktail sausages and / or hot-dogs and brought on picnics, as it is also delicious cold.  I have been making this tortilla for years and my recipe includes milk which is not in traditional recipes and with which my profesor de español in the Instituto Cervantes in Dublin does not agree. You can leave it out if you prefer however this is the way I have made it for as long as I can remember. It is such a versatile dish – you can add all sorts of things to it if you wish – bacon pieces, peppers, ham, asparagus, and it is delicious hot or cold so great for lunch boxes too.

PS – I am hoping to make a short video of how I made it soon and I will add it to this post.

NB – you will need a non stick frying pan to make this to ensure the tortilla doesn’t stick to the pan. I used a 24cm non-stick frying pan. I also used the following:
2 litre glass pyrex jug
1 litre measuring jug
a saucepan lid that fits snuggly in the frying pan (essential for turning over the tortilla).
a plate slightly larger than the frying pan
a wooden spatula

Tortilla equipmt 2


Serves: 6-8

Preparation time: 5/10 mins approx.

Cooking time: 20/30 mins approx.


700g approx rooster potatoes, peeled
1 onion, skin removed
4 large eggs
300mls olive oil*
50/100mls milk
Sea salt

  • Put the olive oil into the frying pan and heat it gently.
  • Slice the potatoes thinly using either a mandolin (carefully!) or using the slicing attachment on a food processor
  • Combine the potatoes with the onions by tossing them together in a large bowl
  • Slide the potatoes and onions gently into the pan, pressing them down so the oil is just barely covering them
  • Cook over a gentle heat for 10 to 15 minutes ( you know they are cooked when a knife goes through them easily)
  • Whisk the eggs together in a jug and top up with milk to bring the mixture up to approx 350 mls
  • Season the mixture with salt
  • Drain the oil into a large wide necked jug or bowl using a saucepan lid (saucepan) to hold the potato mixture in the pan
  • Pour the egg and milk mixture into the pan, tilting the pan to encourage the liquid to move over the edge of the potato mixture
  • Cook for 5 to 10 minutes on a medium heat
  • Turn the tortilla over using the saucepan lid and slide the uncooked side back into the pan (if some potatoes escape just tuck them in underneath using a wooden spatula!)
  • Cook for a further 5 to 10 minutes on a medium heat
  • The tortilla is cooked when it is nicely golden on both sides.
  • Delicious served hot or cold.

*This may seem like a large quantity of olive oil but you can re-use it by filtering it through a small sieve  into a container or bottle (using a funnel).


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