Tortilla with olives, cheddar and cilantro

Fall is really starting to get on my nerves. The gray skies, the shorter days. In a season when I should be cooking soups and stews, I’m still into summer, and foods that remind me of elsewhere, like this dish.

Tortilla, the Spanish omelette, they are, for all intents and purposes, the same thing. I ate it in sandwiches, bocadillo, in Spain. It’s usually served as a snack (tapa), hot or cold. Sometimes it’s made with leftover french fries and potato chips, or raw potatoes cooked right there in the pan. They can be tall or short, have different fillings, so I don’t feel too blasphemous tweaking it a bit to use up leftover ingredients, as it’s meant to be that kind of whatever-you-got-on-hand sort of dish. I arrived at this amalgam because of the contrast of sharp flavors; the cheddar cheese (though cheese is usually not a component of torillas), olives, and cilantro. They go well with eggs and potatoes and each other. I also fudge the authenticity a bit by finishing it in the oven, rather than browning it in the pan as tortillas are typically made. It should be a really inexpensive and filling meal, either for brunch or dinner. I like to slice it and serve with a salad on the side.

Tortilla with olives, cheddar and cilantro

servings: 4-6 slices per tortilla


  • 6 eggs
  • 3-4 medium sized yukon gold potatoes, peeled, chopped and sliced thinly
  • 1/2 cup of grated sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1 handful of chopped cilantro
  • 5-6 pitted sliced kalamata or green olives
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • olive oil
  • 1/2 white onion, finely minced
Heat a cast-iron or medium sized oven proof skillet with olive oil, and saute minced onion until tender and translucent. Add potatoes, more olive oil and salt well. Cook on medium high heat, as though making hash browns, until the potatoes are cooked through. Preheat the oven to 350. In a separate bowl, whisk eggs, salt and pepper, and add cheese, cilantro and olives. Pour the egg mixture over the potatoes, and let cook for a few minutes until the eggs start to set. Then place in the oven for 20-25 minutes until the dish is puffed and cooked through. Remove and garnish with extra cilantro or grated cheese.