All this last week, I have had a solitary red bell pepper sitting among the other vegetables in the fridge and looking at me -I felt -reproachfully for being left unused.
I usually love red bell pepper in salads, but I haven’t felt like making salad since the weather has turned cold. So I decided this evening to make a Spanish omelette instead, since red pepper makes a healthy, tasty,colorful addition to it. I will use some of it for lunch tomorrow for Noor and me – it is a food she loves. This omelette, called a tortilla in Spain, luckily keeps well for a few days in the fridge, so the rest of it will be handy for dinner for the 4 of us one evening later this week.
You could add meats (such as diced ham) and vegetables to the basic egg and potato combination, to make different kinds of tortilla. Here’s the recipe for my version of it.
6 medium sized potatoes, peeled and cut across in to very fine round slices( I use a food processor to do this; I’d find it a challenge to slice the potatoes as fine by hand)
1 large red bell pepper, cored and diced
2 medium sized onions, peeled and sliced fine
4 tablespoons of olive oil
Heat 3 tbsp of the olive oil very slightly in a large, fairly thick-bottomed frying pan. Add the onions and the potatoes, cover, and leave to cook till the potatoes are soft, over moderate heat. Turn the mixture gently from time to time with a flat/wide cooking spoon, taking care that the onions and the potatoes don’t brown or burn. Try to separate the fine slices of the potatoes – which tend to stick to each other because they are so thin – each time, so that all of it gets cooked. Half way through, add the pepper.
When the mixture is cooked (the potatoes should be soft but not lose all form and become mushy, though they will be smashed up a bit), take it out in to a large dish, and allow it to cool.
Break the eggs in a separate bowl, and season with salt and pepper. Add to the first mixture when it has cooled and stir gently to mix evenly.
Return the frying pan to the heat. Add 1 tablespoon of olive oil, turn the egg and potato mixture back in, cover, and leave it to set, on moderate heat. When the mixture is almost set (this will take about 10 minutes;the middle won’t yet be set but don’t wait for this to happen else the other side will get burnt), turn the omelette over by sliding it on to a large plate, and then leave the other side to set. This will take just a few minutes.
Take it out when it is cooked on to a large serving plate and when it has cooled down, wrap it in cling film to store in the fridge.
This omelette makes a complete meal, with a green salad or soup, and some bread. And since it is easy to carry, sliced up, it is a great picnic food as well. I also make it sometimes for an indulgent, leisurely sort of weekend breakfast.
I am looking forward to my delicious lunch tomorrow, already 🙂