I’m not very good at that whole repurposing leftovers thing – I don’t shop or cook nearly as economically as I could, or should. I know it. It’s a failing of mine. That’s why I was so pleased with myself when I made this leftovers-with-egg-in-a-frying-pan dish. I had a handful of bits and pieces left from another couple of meals – nothing that was enough to count as a portion in itself, but all of which pointed towards making something greater than the sum of its parts, if you will. Inspiration struck: a Spanish tortilla! The perfect way to use things up.
What I ended up with was much thinner than a tortilla, and probably wrong in other ways besides, so I gave it a new and, if I say so myself, rather fetching name. I give you: the Tortomelette!
I had new potatoes, courgette, yellow pepper, celery, red onion and asparagus. All I had to add was some eggs, a dash of milk and plenty of seasoning. I won’t include a recipe, per se, so much as an idea of how to create your own. I used two eggs, which was enough to make this thin creation – you could easily add more, to make a thicker tortilla.
I had a think about which veg would take longest to cook, or which I’d want to be soft before I ate them. In this case, that was the potatoes, the onion and the celery. I sliced them all up thinly and threw them in a small frying pan (too big and you’ll end up with a torcrepomelette and that’s just ridiculous) with a spot of oil, seasoned well and sautéed for only a few minutes.
Once they were evenly salted and peppered, and starting to look a bit cooked round the edges, I added a chicken stock cube and enough boiling water to cover the potatoes. I left it to simmer for ten minutes, until the potatoes were cooked but still firm and all the stock was absorbed. I kept an eye on it along the way, to make sure it didn’t run dry and burn.
I threw in the rest of the veg here, all chopped up into even, bite sized pieces, and stirred through with another wee pinch of salt and few grinds of pepper, plus another drizzle of oil to season the pan and help the finished result not to stick.
Great! All that veg in one place – it does a person good, you know. I don’t eat meals like these nearly often enough. I cracked two eggs into a bowl and beat them with a good splash of milk – not too much, about the same amount as you’d use for scrambled eggs.
Yes, this is very much a guessipe.
You can see that the two eggs weren’t enough to cover over all the veg, which I liked in the end – having some of the veg sitting almost on top was appealing, added lots of colour.
The egg started to set round the edges really quickly, and I made sure to keep running a knife round the sides of the pan to stop the egg from sticking, and shape the tortomelette. It took about fifteen minutes on a looooow heat to be almost completely set. This was the trickiest part – waiting for the egg to set, and having patience while it did. It has to be a low heat, so that it doesn’t burn on the bottom while it cooks through the middle.
After the fifteen minutes, the top was still a little runny, as you can possibly see in the picture below, but when I poked it with a stick, the centre was set – by which I mean, a toothpick came out cleanly when inserted.
I popped it under the grill for a couple of minutes to finish the top – no more than five minutes, it doesn’t take long.
That was it, really. Just ran a knife round the edges and underneath the end product, to encourage it out of the pan. A bit of careful spatula work plus a liberal dose of pan-shoogling, and the tortomelette slid out and onto the chopping board. I cut it up, covered with some chopped up parsley, and that was dinner.