Bulked up with potatoes, this Middle Eastern scramble is hearty and satisfying. I learned to make it from a Palestinian Muslim, sans pilpelchuma. This make sense because pilpelchuma, according to Jerusalem authors Yotam Ottolenghi and Sami Tamimi, is used by Jews from Tripoli. Ottolenghi and Tamimi go on to say that it’s great whisked into eggs when making scrambled eggs. I immediately wondered if a touch of the fiery hot pilpelchuma would be a good addition to the basic potato-and-egg scramble I learned to make years ago. It’s not just good, it’s addictive.
Serves 3 with hearty appetites
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 medium all-purpose potatoes (about 1 pound), peeled and cut into ¼-inch dice
1 tablespoon water, plus more if needed
¾ teaspoon salt, plus more if needed
4 large eggs
½ teaspoon pilpelchuma (recipe in the cookbook Jerusalem)
Chopped flat-leaf parsley, for garnish (optional)
3 pita breads
- Heat the oil in a large nonstick or seasoned cast-iron skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until translucent, about 3 minutes. Add the diced potatoes, reduce the heat to medium-low and continue to cook for few minutes, stirring frequently. Add the water and ¾ teaspoon of salt and cover. Continue cooking, stirring from time to time, until the potatoes are just tender, about 15 minutes, adding a little more water if necessary to keep the potatoes from sticking to the bottom of the pan.
- In a bowl, whisk the eggs and pilpelchuma together. Add the eggs to the skillet, reduce the heat to low, and cook, stirring frequently, to desired doneness. Adjust the seasoning, if needed. Sprinkle with the parsley, if using, and serve with pita bread. To eat, tear off a bite-size piece of pita bread and use it to scoop up the potatoes and eggs. If you have leftovers, they can be lightly rewarmed and are good served as a sandwich in a pita envelope with salad greens.