Is it breakfast? Is it dinner? Is it a late night snack after a few beers?
It’s any and all, my friends.
Anyone else know the joy of living with a shift worker? Mr. Veggie is on a rotation that includes regular weeks of working night shifts. And in that week, we overlap for a few hours when I come home from work, before he goes in.
My dinner time = his breakfast time.
So what to cook?
Hearty breakfast and brunch foods can easily double as dinner, so I am working to build my bank of “breakfast for dinner” recipes. And it’s a great way to force myself to try new breakfast foods. I am not a morning person, so anything too ambitious would usually get overlooked (I can’t even handle a waffle recipe with more than one bowl involved).
But in the evenings, I am prepared to make a little more effort.
Patatas bravas needs no introduction for anyone who frequents tapas bars. Especially a vegetarian. Sometimes it’s the only thing on a Spanish influenced menu that we can eat. But don’t feel sorry for us. Oh no. We get to eat multiple portions of patatas bravas.
(As a side note, vegetarians do well in the Brindisa chain of tapas restaurants in London. They have veggie croquettes, and deep fried goats cheese, among other things.)
Some serve their patatas bravas with just the tomato sauce. This is delicious, for sure. Fried potatoes in a smoky tomato sauce topping. You can’t get any better than that… or can you?
Actually, yes. When you find a tapas bar that serves it with the spicy tomato sauce and then goes and pours some aioli over the top. That is the jackpot.
So, here’s the plan. Cubes of deep fried potatoes, topped with a smokey tomato sauce with eggs poached right into the sauce (instant breakfast transformation). And then, when you think it can’t get any better, a healthy dose of aioli on top.
But- we aren’t going to make an aioli from scratch today. I mean, you could if you wanted to. But I’ve included a shortcut method in this recipe.
Mayonnaise + garlic + some good quality extra virgin olive oil. Makes it taste a little bit more sophisticated than just garlic mayonnaise, and with a more runny, soft and luxurious texture.
You do need a reasonably good mayonnaise to start with though. If you’re in the UK, you’ll be fine with your supermarket brand. Americans, your mayo can taste a little more vinegary so it may not work as well unless you get a more upmarket blend.
So. Whether you want breakfast, dinner, or a snack… you are going to be in luck with this dish. I hope you enjoy!
- 3 medium potatoes, chopped into small cubes
- 2 eggs
- ½ small red onion, minced,
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 Tsps smoked paprika
- ½ Tsp brown sugar
- 1 Tblsp red wine vinegar
- 1 can of chopped tomatoes
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 2 Tblsps mayonnaise
- 1 clove garlic, crushed
- 1 Tblsp olive oil (extra points if it's garlic infused)
- Heat a little bit of oil in a deep wok or saucepan, and saute onions until soft and lightly browned.
- Add garlic and smoked paprika, and saute for a couple more minutes until the flavours are released (being very careful not to let the garlic brown)
- Add the sugar, vinegar, and finally the chopped tomatoes.
- Cover and simmer the sauce.
- Deep fry the potato cubes on a low heat for about 10 minutes, until they are a very light brown colour.
- Remove and leave to one side to cool down.
- Now make the aioli, by whisking all ingredients into a small cup.
- Break time! You can leave the sauce simmering and the potatoes cooling for about 15-20 minutes, until the sauce is nice and thick.
- Using a wooden spoon, create small wells in the sauce to crack the eggs into.
- Once all eggs are in the pan, cover and simmer on a low heat until eggs are cooked.
- Turn the deep fryer back on to it's highest heat setting, and immerse the potatoes for another 5 minutes until they are deep brown and crispy.
- To assemble, pour your potatoes into a large bowl and cover with the sauce and egg mixture. Be careful when you scoop out the eggs not to break them- I use a large serving spoon for this. Dot drops of aioli all over the top.
- Tuck in!
This could also serve 4 as a snack, just add two additional eggs.