An easy tortang talong recipe with crisp and curly edges; smoky and flavorful on the inside. Here you will learn how to make your favorite Filipino eggplant dish in two ways. Perfect for breakfast, lunch, or dinner!
What is Tortang Talong?
Tortang talong is a quintessential Filipino dish made of grilled eggplant dipped in eggs and then pan-fried until crispy. It is often described as an omelet but it’s more of a cross between a frittata and an omelet in my personal opinion.
This Filipino dish is popularly served for breakfast with a warm cup of rice (or garlic rice) but definitely enjoyable for lunch and dinner too.
Why you’ll love this recipe
- You will learn how to cook the eggplant in two ways–boiled and roasted or grilled.
- The eggplant is well-seasoned and flavorful!
- Easy to follow the recipe. If you’re just beginning to learn how to cook then I’m glad to be of help.
What you need
This tortang talong recipe only requires 5 ingredients, these are:
The best type of eggplant for tortang talong is the Filipino variety called “Talong Tagalog.” If you can’t find it, here is a list of varieties that are a good substitute:
- Italian eggplant (Sicilian eggplant)
- Japanese eggplant
- Chinese eggplant
These varieties have a similar taste and texture, making them suitable for making tortang talong.
- Eggs – Use whole fresh eggs. The recommended ratio is one egg per one piece of eggplant.
- Salt and Pepper – simple seasonings to make the eggplant omelet tasty.
- Garlic powder – my Mama’s secret ingredient to making the best tortang talong by making it aromatic and flavorful.
How to Make It
And here’s the step-by-step process on how to make it:
- Cook the eggplant–Choose from charcoal grilling, stove-top roasting, or boiling in water.
- Peel eggplant – Make sure it’s cool to the touch to avoid burning your fingers.
- Flatten with the back of a fork until the flesh is spread out.
- Season with salt, ground back pepper, and garlic powder.
- Pan-fry in hot oil.
3 Ways to Cook the Eggplant
There’s no one hard rule for cooking the eggplant. Just choose whatever is convenient for you:
Of course, we all know that anything that involves charcoal grilling takes up time and some preparation. And so most home cooks nowadays, prefer roasting the eggplants over a direct flame of a gas stove. This is the way easiest way of cooking the eggplant and achieving the roasted and smoky flavor.
The traditional way of making tortang talong is grilling over hot charcoal until the flesh is soft (but not mushy) and the skin becomes charred. Bringing out the smoky flavor is the goal of this cooking method.
An “atypical” way of softening the eggplants. This comes in handy if you don’t have an oven or a gas stove to grill the eggplants. Purists probably shy away from this because it tends to make the eggplant a bit watery. Just a bit but I personally think it works “almost” the same as grilling without the smoky flavor.
Follow these simple cooking techniques to make a successful tortang talong:
- Use medium heat to grill or roast the eggplant on the stovetop. This will blister and blacken the skin and slowly cook the flesh inside. Use cooking tongs to flip from one side to another.
- Cool the eggplant completely before peeling off the skin.
- Season the flesh on both sides. This is the secret to making a delicious tortang talong.
- Dip the eggplant in the beaten eggs and make sure all sides are coated.
- To get the crispy and curly edges, make sure the oil is hot enough before frying the talong. If the oil is lukewarm, it will make the eggplant greasy and oil.
- Maintain medium heat and cook both sides until golden brown.
Can I cook the eggplant in an air-fryer or microwave?
I have to try cooking the eggplant or in an air-fryer. I will definitely update this post as soon as I’ve done my tests.
What to Serve with Tortang Talong
Serve over a warm cup of rice or bagoong rice with a side of tomato salad. Drizzle with ketchup or hot chili sauce on top. In the Philippines, we love tortang talong with our very own sweet banana ketchup. So yummy!
Other recommended dipping sauces are fish sauce (patis) with calamansi (Philippine lemon) or lemon, soy sauce with calamansi, or anchovy sauce (bagoong-isda).
How about you?
Serve it with these Filipino dishes
- Chicken Binagoongan Recipe
- Sarciadong Isda
- Salmon Fillet Paksiw sa Gata
- Pork Giniling with Potatoes and Quail Eggs
- Pork Belly Bicol Express
- Easy Skinless Longganisa (Hamonado)
- Pork Binagoongan (Binagoongang Baboy)
Tortang Talong Recipe (Filipino Eggplant Omelette)
Cook the eggplant (2 methods, choose 1)
- Stove Roasted – Pierce eggplant with a fork or the tip of a knife. Place the eggplant directly on the burner of a gas stove turned to medium heat. When one side is charred, turn with tongs and start charring another side. Repeat until the eggplant has softened. Test doneness using a fork.Boiling – Place eggplants in a pan and add water until covered. Bring to a boil and cook until soft and tender. Test doneness using a fork.
- Transfer to a plate and let it cool.
- Gently peel off the skin with your fingers. Flatten the flesh with the back of the fork.
Season and Fry
- Lightly season both sides of the eggplant with salt, garlic powder, and ground black pepper. Set aside
- Beat eggs in a shallow bowl or plate. Add remaining salt, garlic powder, and black pepper. Dip the eggplant into the mixture, making sure all sides are coated. Do it one at a time.
- Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat. Once hot, gently place the eggplant in the pan. Fry until golden. Cook a bit longer if you want it extra crispy.
- Spoon some of the beaten egg on the top side just before flipping to brown the other side.
- Transfer to a serving plate and serve with rice and your favorite dip–ketchup, soy sauce, or fish sauce with calamansi.
Recipe Notes & Tips:
- Talong Tagalog
- Japanese Eggplant
- Chinese Eggplant
Originally published Sep 2019. Updated June 2023 with new photos, same great recipe.
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