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I Need Some Flipping Help please

I was making a yummy Spanish tortilla the other day when I hit the part of the recipe that I dread. It involves flipping the half-cooked tortilla on to a plate and then sliding the uncooked side back into the pan. I have a Calphalon non-stick pan - maybe it's 8 inches or so - which I find quite heavy to lift with one hand - I can do it but it's hard to balance and flip. So when I'm trying to manoeuver the pan in one hand and the plate in the other, it just all feels a bit awkward. If my husband is home, we do it as a 2-person job. In the absence of a) only making this recipe when someone else is home; and b) lifting weights to pump up my biceps - any suggestions? Thanks.

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  1. I cover the pan with a plate, grip the plate/pan on either side, flip, then either slide the tortilla back into the pan, or reverse on another plate, then cover the plate with the pan and flip it back into the pan. Or, I stick the pan under the broiler ...

    1. You could put the entire pan with the uncooked side of the tortilla up & slide it under the broiler....

      3 Replies
      1. re: fauchon

        I wouldn't recommend placing a nonstick skillet under the broiler. The nonstick coating on the upper edges of the pan will not stand up to a broiler's heat; you could ruin the pan and/or end up with teflon in your food.

        1. re: Hungry Celeste

          Ooops...you're right. I use a non-coated pan so don't have this issue....

        2. re: fauchon

          you might burn it of you do that, tortillas need very low heat so the egg is cooked and runny at the same time in the middle.

        3. Use two plates. Slide the tortilla onto plate #1, and cover with plate #2, sandwiching the tortilla between the plates. Flip the whole thing over so the tortilla is now resting on plate #2, then slide back into the pan.

          1 Reply
          1. re: doctor_mama

            i would think this method would work rather well.

            i realize this might not be the solution you were looking for, but i've made tortillas using a 6" nonstick pot. if you have something that small then you can make a thicker tortilla and will have a lighter load to handle. i personally love them a little fat and a touch gooey still inside.

          2. Or you can learn the skill of flipping with out the plate. I took me a lot of practice but i can do it most of the time. and you can do it two handed to help with the weight of the pan

            or use an oven but beware of too high at temp and doing damage to your non stick surface.

            - P.

            1. I use a pot lid with a smoooth, slightly concave underside instead of a plate. It has a knob which is a heck of a lot easier to hold onto.

              1 Reply
              1. re: Aromatherapy

                This is exactly the method I use and it takes all the suspense out of flipping. I also apply some lubricity (oil, Pam, butter, etc.) to the lid to make the slide even easier.

              2. I'm not sure I'm understanding your problem here. I don't see why you don't just flip the tortilla right in the pan. Much like you'd flip a pancake or a piece of fish.
                If it's a question of the thing falling apart, try non-scratching tongs to hold it while doing so.
                It sounds a bit like my old quesadilla conundrum. I beat the problem by baking my quesadillas on a pizza stone.

                Hope this helps

                3 Replies
                1. re: Davwud

                  The tortilla is much bigger than a pancake or a piece of fish - it's the size of the whole pan, and thus prone to breaking unless you had a huge spatula.

                  1. re: Davwud

                    You're thinking of a flour type tortilla. This is a Spanish tortilla, which is a bit like a giant omelet -- a totally different beast. Can't pick it up with tongs.

                    1. re: Anne H

                      Ya, I caught on to that.

                      Perhaps get it out of the non stick pan and onto a pizza round (Not a stone, it'll break) or something and then under the broiler.

                      If I'm just clueless as a monkey on this one, I apologize

                  2. Thanks for all the great suggestions. Part of my problem is also that the dish that I flip it on to, which does have a curved lip (which is good), is just about the same size as the pan when it should perhaps be a tiny bit bigger. I like the ideas of sliding it out on to a plate first and then flipping it with another plate, or double gripping the 2 sides of the pan/plate (rather than one hand on each) or using a pot lid - I think that all of those would give me a better grip...for my flip. And yes, as MMRuth points out to Davwud, the tortilla is made with 6 eggs, 4 or 5 sliced potatoes and a few chopped onions so it is both large and heavy - I've also tried to flip using 2 jumbo spatulas but that didn't work either.

                    I look forward to trying out these new techniques - thanks again.