When I was in Valencia, Spain, I was taught how to make a Spanish omelette. It’s essentially pan-fried onions and potatoes coated with eggs, seasoned with the basics that are salt and pepper and then cooked in a skillet on both sides for a few minutes where it looks like a super thick, egg pancake. Truth be told, it is one of the most delicious egg dishes you’ll ever have.
HOWEVER, as basic as it sounds, it can be a messy and somewhat cumbersome thing to make with the flipping, removing a half-cooked, runny egg mound to a plate and then returning it to the pan to cook on the other side. At the class I took, three people who volunteered with flipping the half-cooked omelette had it spill onto the counter. So I decided to take the basics of a Spanish omelette, add some optional Spanish-favored cheese and meat and scramble it up to give you that flavor experience, but with a much simpler and fool-proof approach to making it. I give you, the Spanish Omelette Scramble!
Watch The Video!
Prep The Potatoes & Onion
Beat the Eggs
Pan-Fry The Potatoes and Onion
Add the eggs to join the veggies
Add some Spanish Meats & Cheeses!
Scramble the Spanish Omelette
Serve It Up
The Taste Test
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 2 pounds Idaho or russet potatoes (about 2-3 of them), peeled, sliced into 1/4-inch pieces and then quartered
- 1 large Spanish or yellow onion, sliced into thin strips
- 2 teaspoons seasoned salt or regular salt (you can also use Tony Chachere’s Creole seasoning for a little spice)
- 1 teaspoon black pepper (optional)
- 12 large eggs, lightly beaten
- 1 cup shredded Manchego cheese (optional, see Jeff's Tips)
- 4 ounces jamón ibérico, Spanish chorizo (cured/charcuterie-style, NOT raw and the raw and crumbled kind in a tube), prosciutto, or deli ham, diced or sliced into small pieces (optional, see Jeff's Tips)
- Add the olive oil to a 12-inch skillet/frying pan or large sauté pan (nonstick is definitely best here) and bring to medium-high heat.
- While the oil’s heating, gently crack the eggs into a bowl and whisk until smooth. Set aside.
- Once shimmering and heated, about 3 minutes, add the potato, onion, salt and pepper to the skillet and sauté for 15-20 minutes, stirring every 2-3 minutes until the onion and potato have softened and become golden-brown or even slightly charred in color (the potatoes should look like the color of breakfast hash browns/home fries).
- Reduce the heat to medium-low. Pour the whisked eggs into the pan with the veggies and oil, top with the cheese and meat (if using either or both) and let it all rest, undisturbed without stirring, for 30-60 seconds. Almost immediately, the egg around the perimeter of the skillet will begin to solidify.
- Gently slide a silicone spatula under the eggs. A firm, yet fluffy bottom layer will have formed, and now it's time to scramble the eggs! Using the spatula (and NEVER a fork), gently swirl the eggs, veggies, cheese and meat around in the pan, folding it all together (aka mixing them with a swirly flip) so the egg clings to the veggies and the cheese begins to melt. This should take about 1-2 minutes total, at most. (NOTE: A Spanish omelette is typically served a little runny. Since this is an homage to that, I like to cook my eggs until they're JUST underdone and slightly runny. However, you can absolutely continue to cook your eggs until they're more well-done, if you desire. The oil in the pan will prevent them from drying out.)
- Turn off the stove and remove the pan from the heat and serve immediately.
Manchego, a savory, nutty cheese made of sheep's milk, is definitely one of the staple cheeses of Spain as you'll see it offered everywhere when visiting. It is rarely (if ever) sold pre-shredded so you'll need to grate it yourself with a cheese grater (using the side with the largest holes is suggested). Costco sells it for the best value over the typical supermarket. However, if you want to use another pre-shredded cheese, use any of your choice.
Jamón Ibérico is the cured meat of Spain. It is similar to an Italian Prosciutto di Parma in that it's the hind leg region of a pig and ready-to-eat since it's cured, but the flavor are different. Jamón is considered a more premium, high-end cut due to its nutty, smoky flavor whereas prosciutto (also a high-end cut) is generally sweeter and saltier.
Since this is a Spanish omelette-style scramble, Jamón or chorizo is suggested (use a cured Spanish chorizo that's safe to eat with no cooking required - usually found in the charcuterie section) but prosciutto or even regular deli ham is fine to use if you cannot find the more obscure jamón or chorizo in your market. Diced is preferred (if you have a Shoprite in your region, they sell it this way), but slicing up thin slices into bite-size pieces also works.
If you want to halve the recipe, simply halve all the ingredients! The cook time for the potatoes, onion and eggs will be less since you're using less. Just use your best judgement and keep an eye on it all in Step 5 while cooking. Simple as that.