Homemade Flour Tortillas

When I first saw a recipe for homemade tortillas, it said once you make them yourself, you'll never buy them again in the store.  That was not true...the 1st recipe I made was for corn tortillas and while they were challenging, the end result was good.  But not good enough to stop buying them at the store.  Then I remembered that I always liked flour tortillas better, I remember when I used to visit San Diego (before I lived there), I used to get off the plane, head straight to Old Town, get dropped off at the corner of this restaurant where the sweet little Mexican ladies used to stand out on the patio and make these homemade flour tortillas.  They would sell them in bundles of 3, wrapped up with a little pat of butter and a spoonful of salsa and let me tell ya, I would buy 6 of them, just so I would have enough to eat right there and take with me for the weekend, they were that good! 

So I researched recipes for flour tortillas and this is what I've come up with.  They are so easy, I make them almost once a week and I can probably do them blindfolded.  My 2 year old loves to help, so she gets in on it each time now too.  This time we made a few mini tortillas, just for her.  You can definately tell these are homemade with the rustic look of the rough edges, which I love. Once you make these a couple times, you'll be doing the same thing and never buy store bought tortillas again!

 

There are only a few ingredients involved and I always happen to have them in my pantry, so if I feel like whipping up a batch, I can!  Flour, baking powder, salt, lard (or vegetable shortening) and warm water.  Thats it!  So mix together the flour, baking powder and salt.

Next, cut the lard or shortening in.  You can use a pastry cutter or 2 knives or your fingers, which is what I use.  I love all the cool gadgets, but they pile up and I'm running out of room!  So combine the shortening with the dry ingredients until it resembles small peas.

Add warm water and start mixing.  You want it to look like a mix between pizza dough and biscuit dough.  This whole recipe is very similar to an Indian flat bread called Japati.  Similar ingredients and method, so when I 1st made these, it made me think of making Indian food with my mom.  I really need to make some Indian food......

Once the dough is combined, kneed it for a couple minutes to get everything incorporated.  I do this in the bowl, to save the mess on the counter and its just as effective.  Form the dough into a smooth ball.

Cover bowl and let dough rest for about 30 minutes.

This is a normal batch for me, its small, about 8 tortillas, but you can easily double the recipe and store them in the fridge.  For me it's easier to make what we need for each dish.  Divide dough into 8 pieces and roll into smooth balls.  Place them back in the covered bowl until your ready to start rolling.

My baby girl will demonstrate for you the correct technique here....Once you're ready to start cooking them (these will take about 20 minutes between rolling and cooking them 1 at a time), you can use a flat griddle pan and do a couple at a time to speed things up too.  Roll each ball out thin enough so you can almost see the counter underneathe it.  Set your pan up on high heat, you want the pan HOT before you put the 1st tortilla on. 

Nice and thin.....you can do them as thick as you want and just cook a touch longer. 

Lay each tortilla in the hot pan and let it cook for a minute.  You'll see it start to bubble up and then you want to flip it.  Cook for another 30 seconds or so and place in a clean towel or tortilla warmer.  Continue this until your done.  I have a good little system down, roll, cook, roll, cook, roll....and so on.  Don't you just love the rustic edges?!

And there you have it.  Homemade tortillas.  SO worth it!  

 

RECIPE

 

HOMEMADE FLOUR TORTILLAS

Prep Time: 30 Minutes  Cook Time: 20 Minutes Difficulty: Easy Servings: 8 Tortillas

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups all purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

Pinch of Salt

2 tablespoons lard or vegetable shortening

1/4-1/2 cup warm water

Directions:

Combine flour, baking powder and salt.  Cut in lard or shortening until mixture resembles small peas.

Starting with 1/4 cup of warm water, start mixing dough.  Add more water as needed until dough forms and is not sticky.

Kneed dough for a few minutes and form into smooth ball and leave in bowl, covered for abot 30 minutes.

Divide dough into an equal 8 pieces and roll into balls.  Keep covered until ready to roll out.

Heat a flat skillet or griddle pan on high heat.

With a rolling pin on a smooth surface, start rolling each ball out thin enough to see the counter beneathe it.

Place in hot pan until it starts to bubble, then flip and cook another few seconds until you see golden "pop" marks on under side.

Place in a clean towel or tortilla warmer until ready to use.

 


Shonali T.
Shonali T.

Author

Originally from Sonoma County, Shonali's love of food began at a young age in her backyard “mud kitchen”. She published her first cookbook, Shonal’s Kitchen, The Eclectic Home Chef in 2007. She then began experimenting with different spices and started creating blends to cook with. In 2009, SplenDishes by Shonali was born and since then she has expanded her product line to carry gourmet sauces, spice blends, mustards, jams, jellies, chutneys and specialty items. You can find SplenDishes products at local farmers markets, on the shelves of local gourmet grocery stores and online at SplenDishes.com.



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