Tortilla Española

One of the easiest and one of my favorite tapas dishes is a Tortilla Española or a tortilla patatas.  At its heart, it is a simple combination of potato, onion, and eggs.  Typically it is served at room temperature as a bar snack, you can also use it as a perfect brunch dish that can be easily expanded to add in other ingredients.  Layers of perfectly creamy potatoes and lush scrambled eggs, it is decedent without being complex.

This take is another recipe that is as much about process as a list of specific steps.  This is also a chance to dive into locally farmed produce.  The fresher and more seasonal the ingredients, the better the flavor.



1 pound of new potatoes.  Look for a waxy potato like a Yukon Gold or in our case, a Sangre (a red skinned heirloom variety).  Wash well and cut into 1/8″ rounds

1 yellow onion quartered and thin sliced across the grain or 2 large leeks, washed, quartered, and thinly sliced

6 large farm fresh eggs.  The fresher the better

1/2 cup good quality olive oil

Salt and seasoning to taste (Night Kitchen Mo’Spanish is ideal)

Heat the olive oil in a 10″ non-stick skillet over medium low heat.  Carefully add the potatoes and onions to to the oil and turn to coat all of the potato slices.  Cook over low heat until the potatoes are cooked through but not browning, stirring carefully often.  The idea here is to really poach the potatoes in the olive oil.  Once the potatoes are fork tender, strain into a large mixing bowl preserving the oil.  You can either use a slotted spoon or pour through a fine mesh strainer.  You want to preserve the potatoes shape and not have them break down as much as possible.  Save the unused oil to use for scrambled eggs in the future.

Wipe down the pan and add 2 tablespoons of the oil used to cook the potatoes and onions.  Let the potatoes cool down for 10 minutes.  In a separate bowl, crack in the 6 eggs and whisk to combine.  Add ~1 teaspoon of salt to the egg mixture.  After the potatoes have cooled, add the egg mixture into the potatoes and stir well.

Heat the olive oil over medium low heat and once it is shimmering, pour in the potato and egg mixture.  Cook slowly, stirring frequently.  Tip the pan and pull the egg mixture like you would scramble eggs.  After the eggs are mostly set, about 5 minutes or so, put the pan under the broiler to brown up the top.

After the tortilla is cooked through, remove from the oven and using a non-stick spatula, loosen the edges of the tortilla from the pan.  Place a serving plate or cutting board over the pan and, grasping the plate and edges of the pan, invert the tortilla onto the serving dish.  Season with salt and Mo’Spanish blend and allow to cool for 20 minutes to 2 hours.  Can be refrigerated and brought back to room temperature for serving later.

You can always add in chorizo or crab if you want some additional protein.  Bacon is good in anything.  Another option would be to do equal amounts of potatoes and summer squash.  Or mix in squash blossoms to the egg mixture right before it goes back in the pan.