American in Spain

Bocadillo de Tortilla de Patatas

December 9, 2007

As a direct consequence of some recent pimento cheesery, a plan was hatched among some bloggers I have gotten to know to hold a Sandwich Party, a weekend in which everyone makes a sandwich that's unique or special for them and blogs about it. I figured I would go for the most uniquely Spanish sandwich I know, the bocadillo de tortilla de patata, or the Spanish potato omelet sandwich! It's really nothing more than a typical Spanish omelet that you place between two pieces of bread, and it's an item that you'll find at almost any tapas bar in Spain.

I've made a variation that I enjoy that includes onions and peppers, although any ingredients beyond egg and potato are superfluous to the recipe. Eggs, onion, peppers, and potatoes

A blurry flash-less photo of the raw ingredients. These peppers are exactly like regular old bell peppers in flavor and texture, but these just happen to be a little cheaper in Spain.

Step 1: Peel the potatoes and chop up all the veggies.

Chopped potatoes

It's important that the potatoes be sliced very thinly like this.


Step 2: Fry the potatoes, onions, and peppers in plenty of oil for 10-15 minutes, stirring every 2-3 minutes. When the potatoes begin to fall apart due to your stirring, they're probably done.

Fried and draining

Step 3: Dump entire contents of frying pan into a colander, collecting the oil in a bowl beneath. Step 4: Put 2-3 tablespoons of the collected oil onto a smaller frying pan and put it on the stove to heat up. I usually save the remaining oil in a jar for future potato frying adventures. Step 5: Beat 5-6 eggs in a bowl and add the fried vegetables. Add salt and optionally a little pepper.

Cooking omelet

Step 6: Pour mixture into the smaller frying pan and let cook on low heat for 5-10 minutes. Step 7: This is the extremely difficult part that takes lots of practice. You have to place a plate over the frying pan, flip it over, and slide it back onto the frying pan to cook the other side. The really good chefs can flip it in the air, but that can get kind of messy.

Finished Tortilla

The finished tortilla de patata. At this point, it can be eaten with a knife and fork and any number of sauces, including ketchup, mayo, and/or Tabasco.

On bread with ketchup

Step 8: Cut a bit to fit on your bread and put some ketchup on it.

Ready for consumption!

You're done! Time to eat!