top 20 fast food: huevos estrellados

earlier this week the guardian published a top 20 of fast food recipes – food that’s quick to pull together and get onto the table. i’m always keen to be inspired with new options for this kind of cooking, so i’ve decided to try and cook my way through at least half of the recipes.

first up was a recipe for from omar allibhoy for huevos estrellados, which he talks about as follows “no visit to madrid is complete without eating these crashed or broken eggs, as we call them. we eat them for lunch or dinner but you could also have them for breakfast or brunch. a crashed egg is somewhere between a fried and a scrambled egg – it “crashes” because you crack open the egg some distance from the pan.”

so, how did i get on?

it is definitely quick and easy to pull together but you do have to be organised – prepare all the ingredients before you start cooking and be ready to sit down and eat as soon as it’s done. and if you’re a bit of a messy cook, take confidence from the fact that it’s meant to be a bit messy – no need to worry if your egg yolk breaks but do try and avoid dropping bits of shell into the pan!

the final verdict:

would i have tried this recipe if it hadn't been part of the top twenty? no – i’m not a fan of potatoes so the simple combination of fried onions, potatoes and eggs only has limited appeal

would i try this recipe again in the future? i doubt i’ll make the basic version again but i do like the idea of pimping it up with other ingredients to add an extra punch of flavour (there are some suggestions below, from allibhoy). i love the crashed egg and the ease with which everything comes together. 

omar allibhoy’s huevos estrellados (serves 2)

200ml olive oil (i used less, probably about half)

½ a spanish onion, thinly sliced

2 medium potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced

2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced

2 eggs

salt and freshly ground black pepper

heat the olive oil in a large non-stick frying pan over a medium to high heat and add the onion and potatoes. fry for about 10 minutes, or until golden. remove from the pan and set aside. drain the oil from the pan, leaving just enough to fry the garlic. add the garlic and fry for 30 seconds before returning the potatoes and onions to the pan.

break the eggs one by one into the pan. you need to do this from a distance – at least 30cm – so that the eggs crash into the mix. season with salt and pepper and let them cook for a minute or so without stirring. they should still be very runny. use a wooden spoon to carefully mix them in – remember you are not trying to make scrambled eggs! serve immediately.


huevos estrellados is one of my favourite things to eat – however, there are endless flavour combinations. here are some of my favourites:

  • morcilla de burgos and chocolate: add one chopped morcilla sausage to the pan with the garlic and cook as above. stir in 30g grated dark chocolate just before adding the eggs.
  • prawns and chorizo: add a handful of cooked peeled prawns and some chopped chorizo to the pan with the garlic.
  • pimientos de padrón and jamón serrano: add a handful of padrón peppers to the pan with the garlic and cook as in the recipe for huevos estrellados. stir in some chopped jamón serrano (cured ham) just before adding the eggs.
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