Eggs or tuna: I am always left with my two favourite things on my plate, saving the best until last which D says is childish. But which is best, the egg or the tuna? So this version of a Spanish classic is my absolute favourite. I think every family in Spain has its own version of tortilla, the way the potatoes are diced or sliced, oven-baked or frying pan, brown or translucent? According to folklore, a young girl only achieved marriageable status when she could make a good tortilla. Well D made this tortilla, proving his eligibility. The quantities of this are very fluid, amend to however many mouths you are feeding. The basic recipe is from the wonderful Spanish cookbook 1080 Recipes by Ines and Simone Ortega [published in Spanish and English-language editions].
For 2 people
1 large onion chopped
1 tin good quality pale golden tuna [we use the kind in oil]
4 medium-sized waxy potatoes
Peel the potatoes and cut into 1cm thick slices. Place into a pan of boiling water, and cook until tender but not breaking up. Drain thoroughly. Tip onto a chopping board, and dice into 1cm cubes. Heat on low some olive oil in a medium-sized, ovenproof frying pan. Add the chopped onion and cook gently on a very low heat, stirring occasionally, until translucent. Do not allow the onions to brown. Remove the pan from the heat.
Next, remove half the onions from the pan and set aside. Add half the potatoes in a layer on top of the onions. Drain the oil from the tuna. Flake the fish and add in a layer on top of the potatoes. Finish with a top layer of mixed onions and tuna potato. In a separate bowl, beat the eggs with a fork. Season with salt and freshly-ground pepper. Pour the eggs over the top of the vegetables, ensuring the liquid runs between all the layers to ensure they bind together into a cake as they cook.
Cook gently on the hob. Meanwhile, turn on the oven to 100C. Once you can lift the edge of the tortilla gently with a spatula, check if it is set underneath. Do not allow it to brown.
Put the frying pan in the oven, allow to cook gently without browning until the egg is set [about 20 minutes]. Allow to cool at room temperature. Depending on how hungry we are, we eat it either with a simple salad, or with a plate of fried potatoes. It keeps well in the fridge for a day, but always take it out of the fridge to return to room temperature before eating. 5 to remember
infantil – childish
el mejor – the best
traslúcido/a – translucent
el folklore – folklore
la situación – status
‘1080 Recipes’ by Ines and Simone Ortega