In the Spanish kitchen, more often than not, it’s the simple things that we really fall in love with and return to time and time again. Deliciously uncomplicated recipes that are as easy as falling off a log and come unembellished without any fancy garnishes, but taste so good you just can’t wait to grab a fork and dig in!
One of those brilliantly effortless dishes is the classic “Huevos Rotos”. Literally translating to “broken eggs”, this dish consists of a few lightly fried eggs delicately placed over fried potatoes and often comes accompanied with bits of chorizo or slices of Iberian ham. The plate is served hot, and those consuming it are tasked with cutting up the eggs so the soft yolk spills out over the potatoes, which soak up the yolk and makes for an amazingly simple and inexpensive meal any time of the day. Though its exact origins are uncertain, it’s a meal that has evolved throughout centuries to become a favourite item on menus in restaurants across Madrid and the rest of Spain.
One of the most indispensable ingredients in the Spanish kitchen, the humble egg is cheap and as cheerful as a sunny spring morning.
For something just a little more sophisticated, why not try “Huevos a la flamenca”? Basically meaning gypsy-style eggs from Andalucía, the eggs are baked in the oven with tomato sauce, Iberian ham, peppers and peas. Simplicity is bliss!
· 500g cooked potatoes (peeled and cut into pieces)
· 200ml olive oil
· 4 eggs
· 200g cooking chorizo (diced)
· 3 garlic cloves (crushed)
· 1tsp paprika (tap de corti)
· 2 sprigs of fresh thyme
· 2tbsp chopped parsley
Heat the olive oil in a non-stick frying pan and fry the potatoes until they start to colour. Add the diced chorizo, garlic and fresh thyme. Fry until the potatoes and chorizo are nicely coloured and starting to crisp up. Meanwhile, fry the eggs in a little olive oil. Add the chopped parsley and paprika to the potatoes and season to taste. Divide the potatoes between 4 plates and place a fried egg on top. Dust with more paprika and serve immediately.
Huevos a la flamenca (ham and eggs, spanish style)
· 8 eggs
· 4 slices of serrano ham
· 4 slices of chorizo
· 4 tomatoes, peeled and chopped
· ½ medium onion, finely chopped
· 2 garlic cloves, crushed
· 1 small jar of red peppers (piquillo if possible)
· 8 asparagus tips, cooked
· 100g peas, cooked
· 150ml olive oil
· 2tbsp chopped parsley
Heat the olive oil in a heavy-bottomed frying pan and add the onion and garlic. Cook over a gentle heat until they start to soften. Add the chopped tomatoes, season and continue to cook over a medium heat until thick, about 15 minutes. Lightly oil 4 large ramekins or cocotte dishes and divide the tomato sauce between them. Place a slice of ham in each one and break 2 eggs over the ham. Sprinkle with cooked peas, asparagus tips, sliced red pepper, chorizo and chopped parsley. Bake the eggs in a medium oven (180c) until the whites are just set, about 5-6 minutes, and serve immediately.