Tag Archives: eggs

tortilla espanola

 

tortilla 5

when i was 10 years old my mom asked us, her 3 children, if we would like to go to europe. for a year. like to live there. yes, please! and so we did. true story. we bought a VW van in amsterdam (refer back to the whole cosmic part of my moniker), had it decked out to live in and were on our way to camp europe. when you think about it most of europe is located on a latitude that falls on the cool side when it comes to camping, with the exception of summer.  we ended up  spending most of our time in sunny southern spain. eating this.

most of you probably don’t have memories of pleading with your mother to head up to the bar for a drinky-poo. but we did. it was the only way to get a slice of tortilla espanola (free with a glass of wine!). this was our introduction to tapas back in 1975. mom did her best, but she wasn’t (and still isn’t) much of a drinker. so we just had to learn how to make it ourselves. my sister and i still make these on a regular basis. this was probably one of the first things i ever learned how to cook completely on my own, tollhouse cookies and biscuits from a can, aside.

eggs

look at these beautiful eggs from vital farms. they are from araucana hens, i believe. they are the ones that produce the blue-green eggs.

tortilla 3

mmm…lemony, super yellow yolks. commercial eggs ain’t got nothin’ on these.

tortilla 4

you can play with the ingredients a bit. i chopped up some salami i had on hand. like an omelette, you can add just a few handfuls of veggies or meat to liven things up. traditionally in spain, these are sweet red pepper, chorizo, maybe a few sliced mushrooms. but the egg and potato really should remain in leading roles. this is a peasant dish, after all.

tortilla final

tortilla espanola (serves 6-8 as an appetizer)

this is a very fluid recipe, meaning that the amounts may be slightly different for you, depending on the size of your potatoes, eggs, even your pan. the mixture should look roughly like the picture of raw eggs and potatoes in the bowl above before you put in in the pan for the final step. don’t let the amount of oil used in the recipe scare you away. the potatoes should gently fry, but also boil in the oil, then most it is drained off.

4-5 medium sized potatoes  sliced to 1/8″ thickness, then cut slices in half or quarters (i prefer yukon golds, russets will also work)

1 small spanish onion, sliced thinly

5-6 farm fresh eggs

3/4 cup olive oil

salt & pepper to taste

heat olive oil in non-stick 7-8″ skillet over medium heat. add sliced potatoes and a generous pinch of salt and cook until potatoes are tender and appear blistered. you are not trying to brown them, but it’s okay if the edges are slightly browned. remove with slotted spoon and place in a colander. whisk eggs in a large bowl and add salt and freshly ground pepper. add  potatoes (and any other veggies or bits of meat you are using) and combine mixture. pour off all but 1 tbsp of olive oil from pan into a measuring cup and reserve. heat oil in pan over medium high heat, then add potato/egg mixture. allow to set for a minute or so, then slide pan around a few times while cooking to be sure it doesn’t stick. i will sometimes tilt the pan to allow egg to run underneath tortilla if i feel it is very soupy. cook until lightly browned on the bottom, then place an inverted plate on top of pan. quickly invert pan so tortilla is on plate, uncooked side down. then slide tortilla back into pan and add an additional tbsp of reserved olive oil. turn heat down to medium-low and continue to cook until bottom is slightly browned and tortilla is cooked through. you will have to trust your instincts on this as you will not be able to see inside the tortilla. if i have my doubts, at the end of the cooking time, i place an inverted plate or lid on the pan, turn off the flame and allow it to steam for a few minutes. flip tortilla on a plate, allow to rest for about 10 minutes and enjoy!

this is best served warm or at room temperature. around our house, we eat this over the course of  a day or so. it is also great as a light dinner with a green salad and a glass of white rioja. just store in the fridge and remove at least 20-30 minutes before serving.

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lemony egg salad with dill

egg-salad-deconstructed

just returned from our whirlwind tour of california. lots of wine, local brews and fabulous food to earn ourselves 12 hours of sleep last night! but for now, let’s talk eggs. now that the easter season is coming to a close, you might be wondering, ‘what am i going to do with all these #*%$*# eggs??’.  and you also may be one of those that despise egg salad. like a certain, ahem, someone i live with (more for me!!). many folks are turned off by the mayonnaise aspect of it, i suppose. i use very little, substituting plain yogurt for the majority of it. you could leave out the mayo completely, if you wish, but it will be very tangy. i really have always loved egg salad, but over the years i have developed the one i love the most. i believe it to be the perfect springtime lunch.  it is inspired by one of my favorite soups, avgolemono (it is of greek origin–breaking down the word it means egg+lemon). i add a touch of freshness with the dill. we have to use up dill this time of year in texas or it will bolt. right now the weather is perfect, in a few weeks it will be hotter ‘n hades.

dill-fresh

egg-salad-sandwich

lemony egg salad with dill

perfect hard boiled eggs, peeled and coarsely chopped

3 tbsp plain low-fat yogurt

2 tbsp real mayonnaise

2 tsp grainy dijon mustard

1 tbsp fresh lemon juice

2 tbsp chopped fresh dill (don’t bother with the dried stuff, use another fresh herb)

2 scallions, chopped fine (if you cut them on the bias, they look so pretty and delicate!)

salt and pepper to taste

a few handfuls of baby spinach or butter lettuce

8 slices whole grain or light wheat bread, toasted if you prefer

 

prepare and chop your eggs and set them aside in a large bowl. mix together dressing ingredients-yogurt through scallions. add to eggs and mix gently–you don’t want to pulverize your eggs and make them unrecognizable. add salt and pepper and taste the darn thing. i love a good lemony flavor, so i ended up adding a bit more juice and a few grates of fresh lemon zest. if you make this 4-24 hours before you serve it, you will be rewarded with the marriage of flavors. be sure to allow it to sit at least 10-20 minutes out of the fridge before serving, otherwise it will be too chilly to have any flavor at all! spread on your favorite bread or toast and add spinach or lettuce. also would be good with a few very thinly sliced cucumber slices.

makes 4 sandwiches.

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cookin’ class-perfect hard boiled eggs

egg-hard-boiled

i love a good hard boiled egg. in fact, i have been known to go through phases of eating them, almost to the exclusion of all other foods. for breakfast with a slice of whole grain toast, chopped up in a fresh egg salad, as the perfect snack in the afternoon, etc, etc, etc. but i know not everyone’s a fan. sometimes i wonder if more people had them prepared properly, more people would like them the way that i do. ah, the elusive perfect hard boiled egg. almost as intimidating as steamed rice. i hesitate to use the word ‘perfect’ for just about anything, but i will with this stipulation: perfect is as perfect does, or perfect is relative. if you like your eggs the way i do, these will be perfect for you. i like a hard boiled egg cooked all the way through, no underdone centers. having said that, i love a soft boiled egg, but that’s not i’m going for here. you can experiement on your own, adding or subtracting time to your taste.

 i don’t know about you, but for years i wasn’t even aware that there could be an improvement over just boiling them to death (or until i remembered i was even cooking something!), then running cold water over them. the greenish-gray ring that appears around the yolk when this method is employed is the reason many people are turned off by eggs cooked this way. it is a result of sulphuric acid buildup which emits a rather, well, stinky odor. then i did a little research and took some tips from the experts. here are the results.

egg-raw-in-multi-colored-shells

perfect hard boiled eggs

1. first off, start with eggs that are 1-2 weeks old. they will be so much easier to peel if you do. i am giving you a few weeks until easter if you plan on dying the eggs, then peeling and making a good ol’ egg salad after the holiday. and buy the best eggs you can afford-it really does make a difference.

2. put them in a pan with about 1-2 inches of cold water covering them. turn your flame to high and bring to a boil. once the eggs have boiled for a minute or 2, turn off the flame, cover and set your timer for 10 minutes (elise from simply recipes gives the tip that if you have an electric stove, you can turn the heat off just as it comes to a boil–there will be enough residual heat to get the same results).

3. when your timer goes off, submerge the eggs in a cool or ice water bath for a few minutes. this will aid in the peel ‘shrinking away’ from the white of the egg, also assisting in the peeling process. sometimes, if i have enough eggs, i’ll take one out of the hot water before i ice them all down and use it as a tester. if it’s done to my liking, i’ll eat it. if not, then i toss it and allow the remainder of the eggs to sit in the hot water for a few more minutes.

4. voila! you have perfect hard boiled eggs to use in egg salad or amaze your friends with deviled eggs at the next party. you can store them peeled for a few days or unpeeled for up to 5 days in the fridge.

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