Tortilla de Espinacas – Spanish Spinach Omelet

Earlier this week, I posted my recipe for the classic Spanish omelet, tortilla de patatas. Another popular variant is the spinach omelet. In this recipe, I also use potatoes in a nod to the classic Spanish omelet, but not everyone does it. If you want, you can leave the potatoes out and just add more spinach. I also add pine nuts to make it a bit more interesting.

Ingredients

  • 2-3 potatoes (≈ 150-200 g)
  • 6 eggs
  • 500 ml of (sunflower) oil
  • 50 g pine nuts
  • 200 g fresh spinach
  • salt, pepper, ground nutmeg

How to Make It

  • Peel and wash the potatoes. Cut them into thin and even slices (~ 5 mm)
  • Take a pan (or pot) and heat up the oil.
  • Once the oil is hot, add some of the potato slices and cook them – yes, you want to cook the slices in the oil, not fry them.
  • When the potato slices are done, take them out of the pan with the help of a skimmer and put them on a plate lined with kitchen paper to take off any excess oil. Repeat until you have cooked all your potato slices.
  • In a bowl, whisk the 6 eggs until they are fluffy. Whisk in 2 teaspoons of salt and 1 teaspoon of pepper.
  • Add the potato slices and stir everything. You may want to squish the slices a bit with the fork so that they mix better with the egg. Make sure that the slices are not too hot or else the egg batter will already get cooked.
  • In another pan, roast the pine nuts (without any oil) until they are golden brown. When they have cooled down a bit, stir them into the potato-egg batter.
  • Wash the spinach and fry it in the pan. Season it with a pinch of ground nutmeg. Once the spinach is done and has cooled off, add it to the batter.
  • Stir the batter to make sure all ingredients are properly mixed.
  • Heat up a spoonful of oil in a pan. Pour in the tortilla batter and reduce the heat to a simmer. You want the batter to set slowly and avoid frying the underside of the tortilla while the mass has not thickened yet.
  • After a few minutes, the tortilla should have set, and it is time to flip it around. Take a plate slightly bigger than the pan, a pair of oven mitts, and cover the pan with the plate. Keep one hand on the plate and quickly flip the pan by 180° so that the plate is at the bottom and the pan on top.
  • Carefully slide the tortilla with the uncooked side back into the pan and let that side set as well.
  • You can serve it warm or cold.

Tortilla de Patatas – Spanish Omelet

Have you heard about tapas? Tapas are tasty appetizers and an integral part of Spanish (food) culture. They range from the classic, simpler snack to the more sophisticated variety and are traditionally served in bars and restaurant with your drinks. The name, tapa, means “cover” or “lid” and refers to the practice of covering the beverage with a little plate of food to prevent dirt from getting into the glass. These days, you can order tapas separately and make full meal out of them.

Today I thought I would share with you a recipe for the most famous and traditional type of tapa – the tortilla de patatas, or Spanish omelet.

(For the version that uses spinach, click here.)

Ingredients

  • 4-5 potatoes (≈ 300-350 g)
  • 6 eggs
  • 500 ml of (sunflower) oil
  • salt, pepper

How to Make It

  • Peel and wash the potatoes. Cut them into thin and even slices (~ 5 mm)
  • Take a pan (or pot) and heat up the oil.
  • Once the oil is hot, add some of the potato slices and cook them – yes, you want to cook the slices in the oil, not fry them.
  • When the potato slices are done, take them out of the pan with the help of a skimmer and put them on a plate lined with kitchen paper to take off any excess oil. Repeat until you have cooked all your potato slices.
  • In a bowl, whisk the 6 eggs until they are fluffy. Whisk in 2 teaspoons of salt and 1 teaspoon of pepper.
  • Add the potato slices and stir everything. You may want to squish the slices a bit with the fork so that they mix better with the egg. Make sure that the slices are not too hot or else the egg batter will already get cooked.
  • Heat up a spoonful of oil in a pan. Pour in the tortilla batter and reduce the heat to a simmer. You want the batter to set slowly and avoid frying the underside of the tortilla while the mass has not thickened yet.
  • After a few minutes, the tortilla should have set, and it is time to flip it around. Take a plate slightly bigger than the pan, a pair of oven mitts, and cover the pan with the plate. Keep one hand on the plate and quickly flip the pan by 180° so that the plate is at the bottom and the pan on top.
  • Carefully slide the tortilla with the uncooked side back into the pan and let that side set as well.
  • You can serve it warm or cold.

Gazpacho

Gazpacho is a traditional Spanish vegetable soup mostly eaten during summer because it is served cold. This soup does not require cooking, you just need to have a decent blender and you are good to go. The result is a fresh and refreshing soup and perfect for hot summer days. Just make sure you let it get properly cold before serving it. 🙂

Ingredients

(makes about 5 liters; if you filter it, you end up with about 2.5 to 3 liters)

For the Gazpacho
  • 2 kg tomatoes (roughly 16 pieces)
  • 1½ cucumbers
  • 2 green, 1 red, 1 yellow bell pepper
  • 5-6 cloves of garlic
  • 6 slices of toast
  • olive oil, salt, pepper, balsamic vinegar, “crema de balsamico”, potherbs, oregano
For the Toppings
  • ½ cucumber
  • 1 green and 1 yellow bell pepper
  • 2 tomatoes
  • 3-4 slices of toast

How to Make It

  • Wash the tomatoes and cut out the stalks. Take a sharp knife and make a big “X” at the bottom of the tomato.
  • Take a pot and heat up enough water to submerge the tomatoes in it. Once the water is hot, put the tomatoes in it and wait until the skin starts to come off. This usually takes no more than 30 seconds. Then take the tomatoes out of the water and let them cool off.
  • Cut the tomatoes into chunks and put them into the blender.
  • Wash and peel the cucumbers. Dice them and put the pieces into the blender.
  • Peel the cloves of garlic, cut them into slices, and add them to the rest of the ingredients in the blender.
  • Take the slices of toast and cut off the crust. Put the crust to the side; you can use it for the toppings later. Soak the bread for 10-15 minutes in cold water, then carefully squeeze out the water and put the bread into the blender.
  • Blend all your ingredients thoroughly in the blender.
  • Add at least 2 teaspoons of salt and freshly ground pepper each, 8 tablespoons of olive oil, 6 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar, 2 tablespoons of “crema de balsamico”, and 2 teaspoons of oregano. Add potherbs as you see fit (I am a big fan, so I add 4-5 tablespoons easily). Blend again.
  • Take a food mill and sieve the blended soup. Let it sit for 30 minutes, taste it, and adjust the seasoning.
  • Refrigerate for at least 6 hours. When serving, the gazpacho must be very cold.
  • Before serving, prepare the toppings.
  • Wash the bell peppers and dice them.
  • Wash the cucumber, peel, and dice it.
  • Wash and dice the tomatoes.
  • Cut the slices of toast into pieces. Take the leftover crusts from the toast for the gazpacho and cut them into pieces as well. Take out a small pan and heat up 4-5 tablespoons of olive oil. Fry the pieces of toast in the oil until they are golden brown. Season with salt, pepper, and garlic powder.
  • Sprinkle the toppings on the gazpacho and serve it. Enjoy cold!

Empanada with Tuna, Bell Peppers, and Tomatoes

Empanada is a typical Spanish dish originating in the northern region of Galicia. Since my husband is Spanish, this dish has become a bit of a classic in our house and I thought I would share our recipe with you. Empanadas come in many different flavors, but they all have in common that a delicious filling is wrapped in a bread-like dough – hence the name (“empanada” literally translates to “enbreaded”).

It takes between 2-3 hours to make (including the time in the oven), but the taste is definitely worth the wait. Give it a try and let me know on Twitter or Instagram what you think!

Ingredients Dough

  • 500g wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 90g butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 40 ml white wine (if you like; otherwise replace with oil and water)
  • 50 ml olive oil
  • 50 ml lukewarm yeast water
  • 30 g fresh yeast

Making the Dough

  • Mix the wheat and the salt together. Add the eggs and the butter and mix. Add the white wine and the olive oil. Mix again.
  • In a separate container, dissolve the fresh yeast in lukewarm yeast water. Slowly add it to the flour-egg-butter-mix.
  • Mix the dough for 5-10 minutes until you have a homogeneous mass.
  • Oil a bowl, put the dough in it, cover it, and let it rest in a warm spot for 1 to 1½ hours. The dough should double its volume.
  • While the dough rests, you can start preparing the filling.

Ingredients Filling

  • 2 mid-sized onions
  • 2 cloves of garlic (or more, if you like)
  • 4 bell peppers (2 of them green, the rest as you like)
  • 400g (canned) chopped tomatoes
  • 350g (canned) tomato purée
  • 170g green olives
  • 3 hard-boiled eggs
  • 300g of canned tuna

Making the Filling

  • Peel and chop up the onions and cloves of garlic into fine pieces.
  • Sauté them in a bit of olive oil in a big pot or pan.
  • Chop up the bell peppers and add them to the onions and garlic in the pan. Fry for 12-15 minutes until they are crunchy. Make sure not to burn them, so you may have to add a bit more oil.
  • Add the chopped tomatoes and the tomato purée to the mix. Boil for another 15 minutes until the liquid is almost gone and the sauce has become highly condensed.
  • Cut the olives into thin rings. Then cut the hard-boiled eggs into pieces.
  • Once the sauce has become condensed, add the olives, the eggs, and the tuna.
  • Mix it all and season it with salt, pepper, and any other spices or herbs you want.

Making the Empanada

  • You need an additional egg.
  • Knead the dough one more time, then divide it into two parts and form two balls with your hands. Let the two balls rest in separate places for another 10-15 minutes. The doughs should rise again a little bit.
  • Oil a baking tray and preheat the oven to 180° C.
  • Roll out the first ball of dough between two pieces of baking parchment until it is slightly bigger than the baking tray. This will be the bottom half of the empanada. Peel off one sheet of baking parchment, place the dough onto the baking tray, and peel off the other sheet of baking parchment.
  • Spread the filling generously on top of the rolled-out dough. Leave a bit of room on the margins.
  • Roll out the second ball of dough between two pieces of baking parchment until it is roughly the same size as the baking tray. This will be the bottom half of the empanada. Peel off one sheet of baking parchment, place the dough onto the baking tray, and peel off the other sheet of baking parchment.
  • Join the top and bottom halves of the empanada by sticking the layers of dough together. The filling should be completely enclosed by the dough on all sides.
  • Crack an egg and mix it. Take a brush and paint the top of the empanada with the egg. With a fork, poke some holes into the empanada.
  • Put the baking tray into the oven and bake for 35-40 minutes at 180° C. The top should be a delicious golden-brown.

Maruccia Cocktail

A few months ago, my husband and I went to a cute little Spanish tapas restaurant and, by pure chance, came across a new kind of liquor. The Maruccia Elixir is a delicious liquor made by a German who has his own vineyard on the island of Mallorca and now cultivates and produces his own wines and liquors. For obvious reasons (my husband is Spanish and I am German), the man’s story resonated with us and we took a bottle of his Maruccia Elixir home with us.

The liquor has a very smooth and fruity taste, especially of oranges. You can drink it pure, but our favorite cocktail by far is the one I share below.

(Unpaid for and unsolicited advertisement because of brand mention.)

Ingredients

  • 40 ml of Maruccia Elxir
  • 200 ml of tonic water
  • 1 tablespoon of lemon juice (adjust to your own liking)
  • ice cubes

This is a great summer drink when you want to ring in a sunny weekend and treat yourself!

The Maruccia cocktail with lemon juice and tonic water.

Have you come across this cocktail before? Let me know in the comments below or on Instagram and Twitter and share your favorite cocktail with me.