Serves: 6 as a main dish, 8 as an appetizer

This is the type of dish you find in so many Mediterranean cuisines, from the Spanish tortilla, to the Italian Frittata, the Egyptian Marcoude de Pommes de Terre, or the Tunisian Ma’akouda. The Tunisian one is the best known in Israel, in their version the potatoes and onions are deep-fried until cooked through.

In my Savta’s version she boiled the potatoes but didn’t mash them. In this updated version we have kept my Savta’s boiled potatoes and sauteed onions but added Ras el Hanut to bring the scent of North Africa to the basic ingredients of potatoes, onions and eggs.

*read to the end to find a smaller version of this dish

  • 1 kilo (2.2 pounds) potatoes, peeled and cut into 2 cm cubes
  • 2 large red onions, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 5 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons ras el hanut
  • 2 teaspoons flaky sea salt, divided
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper (optional)
  • 8 large eggs
  • 120ml (½ cup) milk (or non-dairy milk alternative)
  • 2 tablespoons, minced fresh parsley

Place the potatoes in a pot of cold salted water and bring to a boil, let boil until the potatoes are easily pierced with a fork. Drain the cooked potatoes and set aside.

In a frying pan heat 2 tablespoon of olive oil until shimmering, add the thinly sliced onions and saute until soft and beginning to caramelize about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally to make sure that the onions cook evenly.

Once onions are soft stir in the garlic and cook for a further 30 seconds, until fragrant. Turn off the heat and stir in the ras el hanut, salt, and pepper if using. Set aside.

Heat the oven to 200℃ (400℉).

In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, and parsley, and the remaining 1 teaspoon salt, mix well. Add the drained potatoes and the fried onion mixture to the eggs and mix well, ensuring that there are no big clumps of onions.

In a large oven-safe frying pan, heat the remaining 3 tablespoons oil, once the oil is very hot add the potato-egg mixture to the pan. As the mixture starts to set, use your spatula to move the edges of the mix slightly towards the center, do this a couple of times so that the edges ruffle a bit.

Cook over medium-high heat for 5-10 minutes until the bottom starts to set, but the top is still liquid.

Move the whole pan into the oven and cook until the top is set 20-15 minutes.

Serve warm or at room temperature.

To make a smaller stovetop version.

Halve the amounts of all the ingredients above. Follow all the instructions, until the point when the whole pan is popped in the oven. At this point, lower the heat and allow it to cook through until the top looks set, about 15 minutes in total, keeping an eye on the temperature so that the bottom of the marcoude doesn’t burn.

Using a spatula slide the marcoude onto a waiting plate, use a second plate to flip it over, then slide it back into the pan with the cooked side facing up. Cook for a further 5 minutes until the bottom is golden brown.