Potato Omelette And Low Carb Alternatives (+ How To For Runny!)
I am a lover of all things Iberic. Portuguese and Spanish cuisines are very dear to me. The first because I was raised with it and the second because my work and several vacations made me have contact with so much great flavours and ideas. I am forever influenced by the meals of our hermanos.
Making the best tortilla de patata is not an easy task and mine is for sure not there yet. But it is good enough for an easy workweek dinner and I would like to share it with you.
How to cook potatoes for a tortilla
Let us first concentrate in making the most common version and then we will look at possible alternatives.
The potatoes are the basic ingredient of this omelette and as far as I know the traditional way to cook them is fried in olive oil. Now, to do this you will cut them into fine slices and add it to a pan full of olive oil and let the cook. I said fried but take into consideration you cannot heat the olive oil as high as other oils, so it is a low heat fried – they cook slowly basically. I’ve seen some people break the potatoes as they cook as well.
Now an important note. If you are trying to lose weight this might not be the best way for you to do this. Especially the breaking the potato part – the potatoes get completely soaked in olive oil. You have two alternatives: pan fry them or boil them in water. Boiling does not get you such a tasty result, but it is the best option if you are dieting (of course, if not following a low carb diet – but we will get to that in a minute).
What I do is the first option. I cut the potatoes in small cubes (I added a picture, but these were a bit big, I usually cut them even smaller). I add just a bit of olive oil to the bottom of a non-stick pan and I pan fry the potatoes. So, this way they will never be submerged in olive oil as stated in the first option but will still get that flavour you get from the fat present in the oil.
Low carb alternatives for the tortilla de patata
I tried low carb for a while in my process to lose weight. I did not like it, but I know it helped me get results – that is why sometimes you see I add this type of alternatives.
In the case of omelettes, the best way to make them low carb is simply avoiding adding foods that are high in carbohydrates – like potatoes… You can still get great omelettes and find good combinations. Some good alternatives are:
- Onion and zucchini
- Onion and red bell pepper
- Garlic and mushrooms
- Garlic and broccoli
Notice I always add onion or garlic to the mix. When you are dieting you need flavour in your food, otherwise you will get too bland meals. Adding onion or garlic is a great way to enhance the flavours of the dish and make is tastier. You can and should also add spices. Basic salt and pepper, some nutmeg, basil or even chilli powder.
I like to give some ideas so you can experiment – the kitchen is a lot more experimentation than it is following written recipes. If you are new to cooking this will come with time and experience – but do not worry, you will get there.
How to make runny tortilla
For me, more than the potatoes, it is the way the tortilla is cooked that brings me the memories of eating it. When I saw for the first time a Spanish runny tortilla I was like “I’m not gonna eat that!”. In my mind, the egg was raw. The tortilla moved a bit like jelly because the egg inside was kind of liquid. And when cut it would release that egg to the plate. It took some struggle to eat it – I wish I ate more that day, because I was never able to replicate that! In any case, that was a crazy tasty extreme example, and you and I can make at home something close to that. Although it might not be the same, it is still crazy good.
Now on how to do it. The best way not to mess this is using a non-stick pan. I’ve tried and failed using others. When you have your vegetables (or other topics) ready, you add everything to the pan. You need to make sure you have a small enough pan to have a high omelette, otherwise it will cook too much too quickly, and you will not get the results you want.
Then you can stir for a bit to get already a more dense egg, but once it starts to set in the bottom you cannot touch it more and you need to wait for it to cook in medium heat. Once the sides start to look cooked use a spatula to separate the egg from the pan. You can also in this step lift the omelette around. Just a bit each time to make use it is not stuck to the bottom.
Now the important part: you need to flip it while the egg is still very raw in the middle. To do this you use a plate to flip and put it back in the pan. And you cook it for just a bit to ensure the bottom is set and you can flip it again without spilling. It is like you are cooking only an outside layer to create a skin in the omelette. When you flip it again it’s ready to eat.
- Non-stick pan with a bit of olive oil
- Small pan so the omelette is thick enough
- Medium heat until the sides are cooking
- Use a spatula to start releasing the egg from the sides and lifting a bit
- Flip the omelette with a plate and put it back in the pan
- Let it cook just for a bit now a flip it again to the final plate