We called it strapatsada, from the Italian uova strapazzate (scrambled eggs); it was the comfort food my mother cooked for me and my sister on summer evenings. In the winter I often make it with the cherry tomatoes from the greenhouses of southern Crete, which are quite tasty, althout a far cry from summer tomatoes.
Last week I decided to fry the tomatoes, and instead of mixing in the eggs, I nestled them in the pan, and after 2-3 minutes, I moved the pan to a 200 C oven and baked for 5-8 minutes, until the eggwhite was opaque. We enjoyed it enormously with fresh crusty bread.
Plain scrambled eggs are not a common Greek dish, but a huge egg and tomato scramble, as you might find in a Greek diner in America, is still a national institution. Some people add crumbled feta in the pan, but I much prefer to sprinkle it at the end; I enjoy my strapatsada with toasted bread or with olive-oil-fried potato slices, a heavenly combination!
Serve with toasted multi-grain, whole-wheat bread and a green salad, or with roast vegetables I often serve it with toasted bulgur pilaf, but simple sliced potatoes fried in olive oil are still my favorite complement.
See also the Scrambled Eggs with Fava beans which is another somewhat different, yet equally delicious combination.
Menemen, the Turkish version, has diced peppers, both sweet and hot, along with tomatoes and chopped scallions. The Provençale bruillade à l’Arlésienne (scrambled eggs from Arles) has grated zucchini, tomatoes and garlic (see variations). Much like classic scrambled eggs, strapatsada needs to be soft and creamy, not dry or too watery. I use my own tomato confit or add a few sun-dried tomatoes to the pan to get the intense tomato flavor I remember from my childhood.
Serves 2-4 as a main course, 5-6 as part of a meze spread (more…)