Thursday, 15 October 2009

TTT.............. that stands for Terrific Tortilla tutorial

Some people have asked me to post a little tutorial for making tortilla de patatas, bless them. Gosh, just looking at the photos again is making me peckish, even though I have already had dinner. Now I am sure there are many different ways of making tortilla de patatas, and they'll probably be a lot quicker/easier/less labour intensive, but this is the way I was taught to do it by a lovely young Spanish lad, and they turn out perfectly each and every time, so I am sticking with this method. Don't expect precise measurements though, lol, thats just not me.

Right, for basic tortilla de patatas you need plenty of a good quality oil, potatoes, eggs, milk, onion, garlic, salt and pepper. I usually make two family sized tortillas ( they disappear ever so quickly ) and use 2.5kg potatoes and 12 eggs for these.

One of the most important things to get right is the size of the potato pieces. They have to be very thin and small. So this is what I do - cut potato in half so that you have two pieces which are nice and flat ( don't cut the potato the other way, so that the two pieces are like little mountains) -
Cut each half into narrow strips and then slice along them to get very thin little pieces of potato, like so -
You are using half the bag of potatoes, btw, errm, that would be approx. 1.25kg, right?

Now I was told to use a wok for the next bit, which is a bit iffy and it would probably be a lot safer doing this in a chip fryer. But as long as you are careful, it is perfectly ok to use a wok. You need to heat a goodly amount of oil in whatever thingy you feel safe with, enough oil to cover the amount of potatoes you are using.

Test the oil to make sure it is hot enough by dropping a little piece of potato into the oil. If it bubbles up, like this

then the oil is hot enough, and you can carefully lower small amounts of potato pieces into the oil. Don't dump it in all at once, it will froth over and probably start a kitchen fire, which is not quite what we are after.

Quickly chop a large onion and a couple of cloves of garlic finely and add to the potatoes, which are now gently cooking in the oil

Stir them around with a large slotted spoon occasionally so that they don't stick to the bottom and so that they get done evenly.

While they are cooking, beat six 6 eggs together with a little milk, salt and pepper in a largish bowl, and slice some more potatoes ( and onion and garlic, if you like ) for the next tortilla.

Check the potato pieces frequently and when they start browning every so slightly round the edges, they are ready for the next step. Use your large slotted spoon to lift them out of the oil, let the oil drain off. Use another spoon on top to squeeze a little and get rid of more oil, and then drop the potato pieces into the egg mixture.

When you have all your potato in the egg mixture, well stirred of course, heat a little oil in a straight sided frying pan. Make sure you swirl the oil around a bit, so that the sides are covered as well. It needs to be really really hot. To test, drop a teeny bit of the egg into the middle, it will sizzle and bubble when the oil is hot enough. Pour the whole lot into the frying pan, the side will bubble up like crazy, but thats how it should be. After a few seconds, turn the heat right down low, flatten the top and sides of the tortilla nice and neat, and put on a lid if you have one large enough.

Whilst that is gently frying, put the next lot of potato into the oil and repeat.

After a few minutes, gently press the top of the tortilla. If it feels completely firm, then it is ready to be turned, if it is still a little soft, give it another couple of minutes.

Now, turning the tortilla is fun, lol. You see, my favourite tortilla frying pan doesn't have a handle anymore, but I cannot use anything else, it has to be this one, it is perfect for the job. Turn off the gas, put a plate on top of the tortilla, put a clean drying up cloth over the whole lot, lift it off the cooker, take it to the table/work surface which you have previously covered with a cloth, and flip the pan over.
Pull the cloth out from under the plate, and lift the upside down frying pan off, and tada, there you have a goodlooking almost-ready tortilla.

Slide the tortilla off the plate back into the frying pan,

turn on the heat again, gently, for probably 5 mins. See in the background, the next lot of potato pieces is almost ready, have you done the egg mixture yet?

Ok, after five mins or so gentle heat on the other side of the tortilla, it should be ready, so repeat the turning process, onto a clean plate of course. And thats it, perfect tortilla de patatas.

Great, now my mouth is watering, and I so want some tortilla. I love it with a little bit of sweet chili dipping sauce dribbled over it. Weird, I know, but it really is very yummy.
Dang, gotta get something to nibble now. xx


Pomona said...

Gosh that looks delicious - I will get the Head Chef to do that one for me definitely! Thank you for posting such lovely detailed instructions.

Pomona x

Anonymous said...

Wow that does look delicious. It is a lot of things to do. I do have a large skillet like that and a top. I wonder if you could use frozen hash browns? I am not able to peel potatoes due to arthritis in my hands. Thanks for the tutorial.

Sarah said...

Did you say 12 eggs?!!! You lost me there! However I did notice your lovely mosiac over your oven. Did you make it Liz? It's fabulous. I know that would have taken ages to make as I have done a small amount of mosiacs before. Much nicer than our horrid creme tiles. Gosh our house has some awful features in it!

Michela said...

What a yummy recipe! Thank your for sharing! tummy starts to's 10.15 am here...

Kelly said...

Looks yummy!
I can see why it would disappear quickly!!

Lots of Love

Kelly xxxx

juanitatortilla said...

Oh my word I am SO glad you made this Terrific Tortilla Tutorial! Are you certain about telling the world about this great recipe? :) hehehe.

Mmm, I can smell those pototoes that are almost done. Oooh, onions too. And my gosh, those eggs?! I can't live without eggs! (Don't expect me to go vegan anytime soon, seriously.)

Kissed by an Angel said...

The tortilla looks really scrummy!!! Thank you for giving us such clear instructions!! I am definitely going to make it! Are you sure 2 are enough??!!


Michela said...

Hey great Liz! I've got an award for you!

cheerfulness said...

Thanks for that! Drooling looking at the wonderful photos. I also spotted the lovely mosaic in the background.

Pleased, too, to hear that your plans for France full time are coming together so nicely. :-)