Spanish Tortilla ~ Tortilha Espanhola

Recipe by Rosa Cocinera y Madre, Photo by Priscillakittycat

Time passes so quickly.  Here we are in June.  Maybe it’s time…

I read (or heard) somewhere that as we get older, time passes very quickly.  I never really believed this because time is precise.  A second is a second, today or tomorrow.  An hour will be the same tomorrow as it will be in ten years.  Maybe whoever said time passes more quickly might have meant that our perception of time changes as we age.  This I believe.

Ten years ago, I had all the time in the world to do nothing.  These days it’s difficult to accomplish all the things that need to be done, within the allotted time.  I used to be an 8 hours of sleep kind of gal, rarely you would see dark circles under these eyes.  Now I’m happy with 6 hours but often only get 5…then struggle to stay awake on the drive home from work.  Neither am I the type to hit the snooze button or one who lies idly in bed.  “Sleeping-in” doesn’t even attain fleeting-thought status.  I tell myself (mostly every night) that I’ll get to bed earlier to make up for lost sleep.  Uh-huh, sure.

Last Sunday night I had it all mapped out and I was on schedule to be in bed by 10:00 p.m. (miraculous).  I walked with a skip in my step and gave myself mental high-fives for being highly efficient during the day…until I reached the hallway near the laundry room and saw a committee of cats congregated in the area, curiously observing the destruction ahead.  I had accidentally left the laundry room faucet on…and flooded both the laundry room and an adjacent bathroom.  Dozens of beach towels later.  The clock struck midnight and I hadn’t even showered yet.

What’s with the obsession with time? Have you heard the song by Cyndi Lauper?  “All through the night.”  In her video, Cyndi motions her arm in a circle…as she says that the meter clicks and goes running all through the night.

We have no past, we won’t reach back
Keep with me forward all through the night
And once we start the meter clicks
And it goes running all through the night
Until it ends, there is no end

A more recent song that talks about the value of time.  “Maybe it’s time.”  In this song, a delicious Bradley Cooper says it’s time to let the old ways die.

I’m reminded of a recent encounter at work where I could have reacted the same way I always react.  That was until I realized, if I did, the other person would react the same way he/she always does.  So…I had to change.  Most often, people just keep repeating the same patterns of behavior time after time…and then they get upset because the outcome is the same.  Try something new and guess what?  That person who drives you nuts just might become your best friend.  Well, let’s not go that far.  But you get the picture.

Why waste time making the same mistakes?  “Maybe it’s time to let the old ways die”.

On a completely unrelated note, I’ve always wanted to learn how to make a good Spanish Tortilla.  YouTube is the best resource for recipes that involve proper technique.  I searched and found this vivacious Spaniard, “Rosa Cocinera y Madre”.  Her version and explanation of the technique are great.  Even if you don’t speak Spanish, you can still watch the video and make the tortilla.  Thanks to Rosa, I’m now an expert at making Spanish Tortillas.

6-8 medium potatoes, peeled and sliced as shown in the video (800 grams)
1 medium onion, peeled and sliced as shown in the video
Extra Virgin Olive Oil (lots of it)
8 eggs

Heat the olive oil in a saucepan (between 1-1.5 cups).  The oil should be hot, but the stove setting should be on medium (not high).  The objective is for the potatoes to poach in the oil, not fry.  Add the peeled and sliced potatoes and onions and cook for about 10 minutes, until the potatoes and onions are tender.  Meanwhile, beat the eggs with salt.  When the potatoes and onions are cooked, pour into a strainer that has a bowl underneath to capture the oil.  When the oil has drained, add the onions and potatoes to the eggs, add salt and stir to combine.

Add a bit of the leftover oil to a sauté pan and heat.  Pour in the eggs and potato mixture.  Cook, without stirring until the tortilla is formed and takes it’s shape.  During cooking, you can slip a spatula onto the sides of the tortilla to allow the egg mixture to fill in the spaces.  When the tortilla has taken a stable shape but is still soft, place a large plate over the sauté pan.  Turn the pan over with the plate.  Slide the tortilla off the plate and slide back into the pan.  Cook until the tortilla has it’s full form.

-You will use a lot of olive oil to make a tortilla.  It’s worth making two in a row because the oil can be re-used.
-Some recipes suggest adding the potatoes to the oil first, then the onions after a few minutes.  It’s up to you. (Either method works)
-Be sure to weigh the potatoes.  You want to have the right amount of potatoes.

Nossa, como o tempo passa.  Já estamos no final de Maio!  Receitas e fotos não faltam.  Falta tempo.  Tem tanta coisa que quero fazer, mas não dá tempo.  Ahhh, como eu queria ser daquelas pessoas que acorda de manha e fica na cama, sem fazer nada.  Daquelas que bate no despertador dez vezes e não consegue levanter da cama.  Nunca fui!  O despertador toca, e estou de pé.  Existem centenas de músicas que falam sobre o tempo.  Tem aquela da Cyndi Lauper, “All through the night”.  A letra é muito interessante.  “Não temos passado, e nem tentaremos atingir o que ficou para trás.”

We have no past, we won’t reach back
Keep with me forward all through the night
And once we start the meter clicks
And it goes running all through the night
Until it ends, there is no end

É melhor olhar para frente.  A Clara Nunes canta uma música que eu gosto.  “O Amanha.”

Uma mais recente é daquele homem delicioso, Bradley Cooper.  “Maybe it’s time”.  A música propõe que devemos deixar os velhos costumes morrerem.  Concordo.  A pouco tempo, numa situação de trabalho eu quase reacionei da mesma forma de sempre ao deparar com certa pessoa.  Lembrei da música e resolvi fazer de forma diferente.  Sabe que funcionou!  Deixe o passado, não preocupe com o amanha…e viva no presente.

O YouTube é um recurso muito bom para quem quer aprender as tecnicas da culinaria.  A tortilha espanhola requer uma tecnica especial.  Os videos da “Rosa Cocinera y Madre” são ótimos.  Graças a Rosa virei craque na tortilla.

6-8 batatas (800 gr) descascadas e cortadas como mostra o video
1 cebola média, descascada e cortada como no video
Azeite de Oliva extra virgem (bastante)
8 ovos

Aqueça o azeite numa panela mas deixe o fogo em temperatura média.  O objetivo é de cozinhar as batatas e as cebolas, ao inves de fritar.  Adicione as batatas e a cebola, tampe a panela, e cozinhe por uns dez minutos, misturando poucas vezes.  Quando a batata amolescer, coe e deixe o azeite cair numa tigela.  Reserve.  Bata os ovos com sal e junte a batata e a cebola.  Tempere com sal e misture bem.
Coloque um pouco do azeite que sobrou numa frigideira e ligue o fogo.  Despeje a mistura do ovo, batata e a cebola na frigideira.  Não misture. Mas, se quizer, insira uma spatula nos cantos da frigideira e deixe o ovo escorrer pelos lados.

Quando a tortilha pegar a forma mas ainda estiver um pouco macia, coloque um prato por cima da tortilha.  Vire a panela para a tortilha cair no prato.  Devolva a tortilha para a panela e cozinhe até ficar firme.


-O azeite pode ser re-usado.  Vale a pena fazer duas tortilhas para aproveitar o azeite.
-Algumas receitas para tortilha recomendam cozinhar a batata por alguns minutos antes de acrescentar a cebola.  Qualquer metodo funciona.
-Pese as batatas.  A quantidade certa deve ser usada.