Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Homemade Tortillas

I LOVE homemade corn tortillas and after having some really good ones last Friday at a restaurant, I thought, "How hard can it be?" I bought some Masa flour at the grocery store, I already have a tortilla press that my in-laws bought me a couple of years before (that I hadn't used yet), and a cast iron skillet. That is all you need. I mixed 2 cups of masa in a bowl with 1/4 tsp of salt and 1 1/2 cups of water. The directions said to mix it for 2 minutes. It was just like kneading regular bread dough, but a little stickier. I think I would have added a little more flour next time. This recipe was supposed to yield 16 tortillas which I figured would be enough for dinner (steak fajitas) and some leftovers.

Mix the dough.

Roll the dough into 16 balls.

Line the tortilla press with wax paper to eliminate sticking. I didn't have any problem with sticking, so the wax paper worked great.

Press and Voila!

Heat the cast iron skillet (It has to be cast iron for the authentic thing) to med-high and cook each side for 50 seconds. I found that the tortillas would start to bubble when ready to be flipped and that it took a little longer than 50 seconds.

There are some things I would do differently next time, and it was so easy that I will definitely make them again. They tasted so good!
-I would only made 8 balls with the recipe next time. The tortillas were too small with the 16 (only 4-5 inches in diameter). I made a few small ones for the kids and then used 2 balls to make the rest. They were a much better taco size.
-I will absolutely double the recipe. We didn't even have enough to satisfy everyone for dinner. We each had 2 and we all wanted more!
-I will roll them out a little thinner than the press makes them. The press left them a little thick, almost like pancakes.
-I will cook them on lower heat (medium) for longer. They didn't really have enough time to brown much, just charred a little in spots.
-I will make sure everything is ready for dinner before I make the tortillas. You have to completely babysit them and can't get anything else ready at the same time. I sauteed onions and bell pepper while making the tortillas and even that was a little hard. You could also cook them first and then get everything else ready. I kept them in a bowl with a wet towel surrounding them and they stayed hot and didn't stick at all. It think it also helps them to finish cooking in the steam.

All in all, it was a culinary success! I love when I go to special work to make something that turns out well. I don't have pictures of the finished product because the camera ran out of batteries. Bummer.


Matt Winckler said...

Wait a minute. You had homemade corn tortillas at a restaurant last Friday? Was it the cook's night off? o_O

Kristen Borland said...

oh my goodness! sounds so yummy! i'm impressed.

oh and, all that walking at the fair didn't put you into labor??