Nov 6, 2010

Making homemade tortillas with Mr. B (recipe included)

My husband eats a LOT of tortillas. He actually prefers them rather than bread. For breakfast, he likes a soft flour tortilla wrapped around scrambled eggs, grated cheddar cheese and sausage or bacon - wrapped in aluminum foil so he can eat it on the way to work. For lunch he'll eat any sandwich fixings wrapped in a tortilla - from PB&J (though PB & banana works better) to tuna or egg salad. Wrap it in a tortilla, and he's happy.

Unfortunately, two packages of tortillas a week at $4.87 a package are taking too big a bite out of my grocery budget, so I have decided to try making them myself. I found this recipe online here. We are completely out of tortillas at the moment, so I am going to have my grandson, Mr. B., help me make these today. Hey, if you can roll playdoh....  I do wish I had a tortilla press, but for now we'll roll these out by hand.
Mixing master!

This recipe will make 8 equal sized tortillas.

2 cups unbleached white flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt*
1/4 cup lard or butter (room temperature)
3/4 cup hot water (near boil worked best)

*We try to cut down on salt, so I will try just 1/2 teaspoon, and hopefully knock that down to 1/4 teaspoon.

1. Mix together the dry ingredients with a whisk or fork, then add the wet ingredients. Mix the dough together by hand until very consistent, making sure to work the lard/butter/other in very well. Then, on a lightly floured surface, knead the dough by hand for 5-6 minutes.

2. Roll the dough out into a long cylinder-shape and cut the dough into 8 equal pieces (more or less). Roll each piece of dough into a round ball and cover with a tea towel or inverted bowl. Let sit for 20 minutes.

Born to knead!
3. Heat a medium-large sized skillet at medium heat. If you don’t have a cast-iron frying pan, it’s highly recommended at this point. DO NOT grease the pan. Take a single ball and press it with your hand into a flat circle. On your lightly floured surface, take your rolling pin and flatten the dough into a nice large circle, so the dough is about 1/8 of an inch thick. You can flatten all of the tortillas at once and spread them out as long as you have the space. If not, flatten and cook the tortillas one at a time.

4. Place your flattened dough on the hot skillet, spreading out the dough with your hand (careful!) so you don’t have any folds or bumps. Wait 30 seconds and flip it over with a spatula–you’ll notice nice little brown spots all over. After you flip, let it cook for 15 seconds and pull the tortilla off the pan. Repeat with each flour tortilla until done. Serve warm.

Here's my notes on the recipe:

I placed one ball of dough between two sheets of waxed paper to roll them out. Just roll, turn, roll, turn, until the circle of dough is as large as you want. In dividing the recipe into eight, we came up with tortillas about 6 inches across. I think next time I will double the recipe and increase the size to 8 to 10 inches.

The tortillas tasted OK (remember, I only added 1/2 tsp of salt), but next time I plan on adding 1/2 teaspoon of either onion or garlic powder to add a bit more flavor.

These cook very quickly in a very hot pan! 30 to 45 seconds is really all they take on each side. The second side may even go a bit quicker.

Who knew my 4 year old grandson was going to be the Kneading Master?! He not only enjoyed kneading the dough, but he did an excellent job at it. He's hired!

1 comment:

Karen said...

As you said to me on my facebook post of Emily making apple pies...isn't it nice to have fun with our grandchildren and teach them something about cooking food at the same time?