Strapatsada: the same thing all over, the real Greek way.
Strapatsáda is a Greek dish based on eggs and tomato. It's very easy to make and should cost no more
than a 2008 US dollar per person.
This is one of the traditional dishes of Corfu in particular. It is also commonly prepared in much of western Greece and is fairly popular in much of coastal and insular Greece, though it is not usually found on restaurant menus. I made my first contact with it eating with a seafaring family in Piraeus, where dishes picked up in the ports around the Mediterranean often become staples before they make it into the mainstream. Some never do.
As is often the case with Corfiot dishes, due to the island's history and proximity to Italy, strapatsada is probably Italian in origin. Indeed, some Italians still like their eggs "strappazzate" (scrambled). Strapatsada can be used as a brunch dish but is definitely a summer lunch item more than anything else.
- 5-6 large eggs
- One small tin of petite diced tomatoes. Finding the right brand is a matter of trial and error. What you're
looking for, ideally, is a tin in which the fluid is less watery and more like tomato sauce.
- 1 small tin of tomato sauce (keep on hand). You may not need it but this can make the difference between it
being tomato-ey and being watery
- 1/2 cup of extra virgin olive oil
- 1 large onion
- salt and black pepper
A note on the tomato: Some cooks think that tinned tomato is an abomination and will chop their own, fresh
tomato. I find that unnecessary unless you're trying to elevate it to gourmet status, which is not really in
its humble nature. Strapatsada does very well with tomato from a tin. Most home cooks in Greece would agree
Heat the olive oil on medium heat in a skillet or deep frying pan that's large enough to hold ten eggs or
so. Sautee the onions until glassy. When the onions are ready, add the tomato and set the heat to medium-high.
Let the thin tomato juice boil down. Beat the eggs separately and pour in, stirring. Add salt and pepper. Turn
the heat down to medium and keep stirring like you would for scrambled eggs. You're not looking for the other
ingredients to absorb the oil; there should be a good halo of oil.
- More tomato, depending on whether you want the emphasis to be on the eggs or on the tomato
- Crumble and add about 4 oz of feta cheese to the eggs
- Add crushed red pepper, tabasco, or chili for extra zest (this makes it "strapatsada kafterí
- Add some diced, lean ham
- Add about half a green pepper. This seems to be a popular option in the northern Aegean
- Do other omelette-like things to it
- Serve with some Italian-style or similar sausage
You can double the quantities but, if you have more than five people eating, I'd make it in batches. Serve out of the skillet with copious amounts of French, Italian, or other bread with a decent crust to soak up the oil and juice. Expect to get through a whole baguette or equivalent easily.