Spanish Tortilla with Spicy Tomato Sauce

  • Time: 30 minutes
  • Serves: 4
  • Level: easy

‘… If you can stretch to make the Dad’s tomato sauce it’s really, really worth it… but if not a dab of ketchup never goes a miss.’

‘SOS meal! This dish is great because you can use up all the left-overs to make a perfect weekend brunch…’

What you need

For the Spanish tortilla

6 large eggs


leftover vegetables – such as:


Broccoli Beans





Extra ingredients

350ml passata

1 tbs sherry or wine vinegar

1 tsp dried oregano

1 large onion, or 2 small – chopped

1/2 red pepper – chopped

1/2 red chilli – or to taste – chopped

1 tsp smoked sweet paprika

1 clove of garlic – chopped

2 sticks celery – chopped



24cm non-stick frying pan

Large plate for turning

Dad's Recipe Tales

I get very excited by tortillas and frittatas

Spanish Tortilla is a regular dish for a weekend breakfast or brunch. But there is a compelling logic to their role in providing food for the home. We make food, we cook, we generate leftovers and then we make a tortilla.

Like a quick sweep at the end of the day, we all need to make tortillas – they keep our larders nice and tidy.


How Dad Cooked It

If in fact you are short of all the leftovers you need, you can cook them from fresh. Potatoes are fairly essential – so boil these until tender and then quickly saute in oil and butter to give a bit of crunch and colour. Chopped peppers and green beans can be added as fresh ingredients – this will help add colour and a bit of fresh bite to the tortilla. Sometimes I add fresh chopped and fried bacon or leftover sausages or ham.

Make a sauce and the Spanish tortilla at the same time:

  1. Put the passata in a sauce pan with a lid and heat to a simmer.
  2. Saute the onion, celery and peppers – sweating for 10 minutes. Put half the mixture aside in a bowl.
  3. Add the chilli and garlic to the saute and continue to cook for 5 minutes.
  4. Tip the saute into the pan of passata. Add the vinegar, oregano and paprika and continue to simmer until the tortilla is ready.
  5. Add the remaining saute mixture into the saute pan – add the leftover vegetables. Fry on a higher heat for about 8 minutes.
  6. Beat the eggs in a large mixing bowl.
  7. Now prepare the tortilla pan – put on a medium high heat and add a tablespoon of olive oil and a small knob of butter.
  8. Mix the vegetables into the beaten egg and season.
  9. Spoon the egg mixture into the tortilla pan. Using a spatula check the edges of the tortilla – precise timing (and instructions) are difficult. What you want to achieve is a crusty, browned bottom, that is neither burnt or sticking to the pan. The cooking needs to be gentler than expected – to allow the heat to get into the centre of the tortilla. The top needs to feel as though it is just starting to set.
  10. When the bottom is browned, the middle is set, the edges free and a spatula passes under the tortilla without any sticking bits, take a plate larger than the pan and place it face down on top of the pan – then with bold confidence – in a single move – turn the pan over whilst holding the plate in place. Put the pan back on the heat and refresh with just a little oil and butter. Slide the tortilla onto the pan and continue cooking until the reverse side is browned.
  11. Turn out and place on a plate (you might want to present the best looking side up). Let it rest for 10 minutes.
  12. Cut into segments and serve with the sauce and bread.

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