tortilla recipe

Homemade Tortillas

Homemade Tortillas

If you never made tortillas because you thought they were too hard to make, I hope I can change your mind. Tortillas are pretty easy to make. They only have a few ingredients- although you can get creative and add more stuff.  The dough is simple enough. Once made, you just need to roll it out into circles. Heck, you only need to roll them into something resembling a circle. They will taste the same, even if they aren’t perfectly round.

Cooking involves a hot skillet and 30 seconds per side. The flavor and texture are so much fresher than most of what you can buy. Certainly fresher than what is at the local grocery store.

While it is easier if you have a tortilla press, I roll mine out by hand all the time. You could also use a pasta machine for rolling- although that will limit their width.

There is a little fat in most recipes- traditionally lard- but you have wiggle room here, too. I used coconut oil and was very happy with the taste and texture. So here are three recipes for tortillas- corn, wheat and whole wheat.

Corn Tortillas

1 3/4 cups masa harina ( corn flour) it is finer than cornmeal and will give you a nicer end product
1 1/8 cups hot water

In a medium bowl, mix together masa harina and hot water until thoroughly combined. Turn dough onto a clean surface and knead until pliable and smooth. If dough is too sticky, add more masa harina; if it begins to dry out, sprinkle with water. Cover dough tightly with plastic wrap and allow to stand for 30 minutes.
Preheat a cast iron skillet or griddle to medium-high. Divide dough into 15 equal-size balls. Using a tortilla press, a rolling pin, or your hands, press each ball of dough flat between two sheets of plastic wrap. Immediately place tortilla in preheated pan and allow to cook for approximately 30 seconds, or until browned
and slightly puffy. Turn tortilla over to brown on second side for approximately 30 seconds more, then transfer to a plate. Repeat process with each ball of dough. Keep tortillas covered with a towel to stay warm and moist until ready to serve.

Whole Wheat Flour Tortillas

1 cup all-purpose flour
4 cups whole wheat bread flour
1/2 cup fat, you could use lard,  shortening or coconut oil – something solid at room temp- not oil
2 tablespoons salt
1 1/2 cups boiling water
flour for rolling

In a large bowl, stir together 1- cup all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour and salt. Rub in the fat by hand until the mixture is the texture of oatmeal. Make a well in the center, and pour in the boiling water. Mix with a fork until all of the water is evenly incorporated. Sprinkle with a bit of additional flour, and knead until the dough does not stick to your fingers. The dough should be smooth. Make balls the size of golf balls, about 2 oz. each. Place them on a tray, and cover with a cloth. Let stand for at least 1 hour, or up to 8 hours. Heat a griddle or large frying pan over high heat. On a lightly floured surface, roll out a tortilla to preferred thinness. Fry one at a time. Place on the griddle for 10 seconds, as soon as you see a bubble on the top, flip the tortilla over. Let it cook for about 30 seconds, then flip and cook the other side for another 30 seconds. Roll out the next tortilla while you wait for that one to cook. Tortillas can be refrigerated or frozen. Makes 18.

Flour Tortillas

2 c. flour
1/4 c. fat, you could use lard,  shortening or coconut oil – something solid at room temp- not oil
1 t. salt
2/3 c. warm water

Combine flour and fat by cutting in to resemble coarse crumbs. Dissolve salt in water and stir into flour mixture. Form into a ball and knead on a lightly floured surface 2-3 minutes or until it is smooth. Divide dough into 12 equal pieces and wrap each in plastic wrap. Allow dough to rest 30 – 60 minutes. On lightly floured surface roll out a piece of dough into a 7-inch circle. Cook dough on griddle or in a skillet over medium high heat until puffy and golden on both sides, 1-2 minutes. Wrap in a kitchen towel and repeat process with remaining dough, stacking and wrapping as you go. Makes 12.

Homemade Tortillas

Homemade Tortillas

If you never made tortillas because you thought they were too hard to make, I hope I can change your mind. Tortillas are pretty easy to make. They only have a few ingredients- although you can get creative and add more stuff.  The dough is simple enough. Once made, you just need to roll it out into circles. Heck, you only need to roll them into something resembling a circle. They will taste the same, even if they aren’t perfectly round.

Cooking involves a hot skillet and 30 seconds per side. The flavor and texture are so much fresher than most of what you can buy. Certainly fresher than what is at the local grocery store.

While it is easier if you have a tortilla press, I roll mine out by hand all the time. You could also use a pasta machine for rolling- although that will limit their width.

There is a little fat in most recipes- traditionally lard- but you have wiggle room here, too. I used coconut oil and was very happy with the taste and texture. So here are three recipes for tortillas- corn, wheat and whole wheat.

Corn Tortillas

1 3/4 cups masa harina ( corn flour) it is finer than cornmeal and will give you a nicer end product
1 1/8 cups hot water

In a medium bowl, mix together masa harina and hot water until thoroughly combined. Turn dough onto a clean surface and knead until pliable and smooth. If dough is too sticky, add more masa harina; if it begins to dry out, sprinkle with water. Cover dough tightly with plastic wrap and allow to stand for 30 minutes.
Preheat a cast iron skillet or griddle to medium-high. Divide dough into 15 equal-size balls. Using a tortilla press, a rolling pin, or your hands, press each ball of dough flat between two sheets of plastic wrap. Immediately place tortilla in preheated pan and allow to cook for approximately 30 seconds, or until browned
and slightly puffy. Turn tortilla over to brown on second side for approximately 30 seconds more, then transfer to a plate. Repeat process with each ball of dough. Keep tortillas covered with a towel to stay warm and moist until ready to serve.

Whole Wheat Flour Tortillas

1 cup all-purpose flour
4 cups whole wheat bread flour
1/2 cup fat, you could use lard,  shortening or coconut oil – something solid at room temp- not oil
2 tablespoons salt
1 1/2 cups boiling water
flour for rolling

In a large bowl, stir together 1- cup all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour and salt. Rub in the fat by hand until the mixture is the texture of oatmeal. Make a well in the center, and pour in the boiling water. Mix with a fork until all of the water is evenly incorporated. Sprinkle with a bit of additional flour, and knead until the dough does not stick to your fingers. The dough should be smooth. Make balls the size of golf balls, about 2 oz. each. Place them on a tray, and cover with a cloth. Let stand for at least 1 hour, or up to 8 hours. Heat a griddle or large frying pan over high heat. On a lightly floured surface, roll out a tortilla to preferred thinness. Fry one at a time. Place on the griddle for 10 seconds, as soon as you see a bubble on the top, flip the tortilla over. Let it cook for about 30 seconds, then flip and cook the other side for another 30 seconds. Roll out the next tortilla while you wait for that one to cook. Tortillas can be refrigerated or frozen. Makes 18.

Flour Tortillas

2 c. flour
1/4 c. fat, you could use lard,  shortening or coconut oil – something solid at room temp- not oil
1 t. salt
2/3 c. warm water

Combine flour and fat by cutting in to resemble coarse crumbs. Dissolve salt in water and stir into flour mixture. Form into a ball and knead on a lightly floured surface 2-3 minutes or until it is smooth. Divide dough into 12 equal pieces and wrap each in plastic wrap. Allow dough to rest 30 – 60 minutes. On lightly floured surface roll out a piece of dough into a 7-inch circle. Cook dough on griddle or in a skillet over medium high heat until puffy and golden on both sides, 1-2 minutes. Wrap in a kitchen towel and repeat process with remaining dough, stacking and wrapping as you go. Makes 12.

Pineapple Blintzes

Pineapple Blintzes

Pineapple Blintzes

I taught a class last night on cooking with tortillas. We made some traditional dishes, but we also had fun making these fruit filled blintzes. We used the  tortillas to replace the crepes. Everyone loved them.

 

I soaked the tortillas in milk. That is the secret to make this dish work. By soaking the tortillas in milk, they soften up and can be used like a crepe. It changes their texture completely. Soak them for at least 20 minutes, or up to an hour. I placed the tortillas in a shallow baking pan and made sure to drizzle each one with milk as I added them to the pan. They will stick together if softened too long, so you might want to put the tortillas on sheets of plastic wrap or wax paper to keep them separate as they soften. You could also soak them in almond or rice milk, or even fruit juice.

 

For the filling, I used a pineapple filling that I made from crushed pineapple, sweetened with sugar, a little vanilla and thickened with Clear Gel- a type of cornstarch.* Here is the recipe for the pineapple filling along with directions on how to assemble and prepare them.

Pineapple Blintzes

 Filling:

1 can ( 20 oz.) crushed pineapple, packed in juice, un-drained

½ c. sugar, or more to suit your taste

1 t. vanilla

¼ c. Clear Gel or cornstarch

2 T. cold water

 

Butter for frying

12 flour tortillas- 8-inch

Powdered sugar

 

 

In sauce pan, heat together pineapple, sugar and vanilla and bring to a boil. Combine Clear Gel with cold water and stir until smooth. Slowly drizzle this mixture into the pineapple, stirring constantly. Mixture will thicken quickly. You might not need to add all of the Clear Gel mixture. Once it thickens, remove from heat and cool down a little before making the blintzes. Makes about 3 cups, enough for about 12 blintzes.

 

To assemble the blintzes, place a softened tortilla on your work surface and spoon a little pineapple filling in the middle. You can do this with hot filling, but easier if the filling has cooled down or is even cold. Don’t over fill them or you won’t be able to fold them up. I used 8-inch tortillas and used about 1/4 cup of filling for each one. Fold the sides in until they almost meet in the middle and then roll the tortilla up to cover the filling. Place seam side down until ready to fry them.

Heat butter in a skillet, and brown the blintzes over medium heat until lightly toasted on both sides. They will be crispy on the outside, but tender in the middle. Put on a serving plate, sprinkle with powdered sugar and serve while warm.

Note: They can be assembled ahead of time, then kept in the fridge until ready to cook. You can also cook them up ahead of time, and just warm in the oven when ready to serve. If rewarming them, cover to keep them from drying out.

I have made these before and use different fruit fillings. I’ve also made a cheese filled version a few times. It seems I usually have a package of tortillas, so it is a go-to dessert for me in a pinch. Nice brunch or breakfast dish, too. For dessert, you can also top them with ice cream or whipped cream.

 

* Clear Gel is modified cornstarch. It is used in commercial pie fillings and in many frozen dinners. It looks just like regular cornstarch. The big difference between Clear Gel and traditional cornstarch is that Clear gel won’t get runny when reheated. If you have ever used cornstarch to thicken a stir fry, you know that the next day, if you reheat it, the sauce thins out. Clear Gel does not do that- it stays thick. Clear Gel is available at stores in Amish communities and on-line.

 

A Trio of Homemade Tortillas

A Trio of Homemade Tortillas

A Trio of Homemade Tortillas

If you never made tortillas before because you thought they were too hard to make or that they weren’t any better than store bought I hope I can change your mind. Tortillas are really easy to make. They only have a few ingredients- although you can get creative and add more stuff.  The dough is simple enough to make and once made you just need to roll it out into circles. Heck, you only need to roll them into something resembling a circle. They will taste the same even if they end up a little “rustic” in looks. Cooking involves a hot skillet and 30 seconds per side. The flavor and texture are so much fresher than most of what you can buy. Certainly fresher than what is at the local grocery store.

 

While it is easier if you have a tortilla press, I roll mine out by hand all the time without difficulty. You could also use a pasta machine for rolling- although that will limit their width. There is a little fat in most recipes- traditionally lard- but you have wiggle room here, too. I used coconut oil and was very happy with the taste and texture. So here are three recipes for tortillas- corn, wheat and whole wheat.

Corn Tortillas

1 3/4 cups masa harina ( corn flour) it is finer than cornmeal and will give you a nicer end product
1 1/8 cups hot water

In a medium bowl, mix together masa harina and hot water until thoroughly combined. Turn dough onto a clean surface and knead until pliable and smooth. If dough is too sticky, add more masa harina; if it begins to dry out, sprinkle with water. Cover dough tightly with plastic wrap and allow to stand for 30 minutes.
Preheat a cast iron skillet or griddle to medium-high. Divide dough into 15 equal-size balls. Using a tortilla press, a rolling pin, or your hands, press each ball of dough flat between two sheets of plastic wrap. Immediately place tortilla in preheated pan and allow to cook for approximately 30 seconds, or until browned
and slightly puffy. Turn tortilla over to brown on second side for approximately 30 seconds more, then transfer to a plate. Repeat process with each ball of dough. Keep tortillas covered with a towel to stay warm and moist until ready to serve.

Whole Wheat Flour Tortillas

1 cup all-purpose flour
4 cups whole wheat bread flour
1/2 cup fat, you could use lard,  shortening or coconut oil – something solid at room temp- not oil
2 tablespoons salt
1 1/2 cups boiling water
flour for rolling

In a large bowl, stir together 1- cup all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour and salt. Rub in the fat by hand until the mixture is the texture of oatmeal. Make a well in the center, and pour in the boiling water. Mix with a fork until all of the water is evenly incorporated. Sprinkle with a bit of additional flour, and knead until the dough does not stick to your fingers. The dough should be smooth. Make balls the size of golf balls, about 2 oz. each. Place them on a tray, and cover with a cloth. Let stand for at least 1 hour, or up to 8 hours. Heat a griddle or large frying pan over high heat. On a lightly floured surface, roll out a tortilla to preferred thinness. Fry one at a time. Place on the griddle for 10 seconds, as soon as you see a bubble on the top, flip the tortilla over. Let it cook for about 30 seconds, then flip and cook the other side for another 30 seconds. Roll out the next tortilla while you wait for that one to cook. Tortillas can be refrigerated or frozen. Makes 18.

Flour Tortillas

2 c. flour
1/4 c. fat, you could use lard,  shortening or coconut oil – something solid at room temp- not oil
1 t. salt
2/3 c. warm water

Combine flour and fat by cutting in to resemble coarse crumbs. Dissolve salt in water and stir into flour mixture. Form into a ball and knead on a lightly floured surface 2-3 minutes or until it is smooth. Divide dough into 12 equal pieces and wrap each in plastic wrap. Allow dough to rest 30 – 60 minutes. On lightly floured surface roll out a piece of dough into a 7-inch circle. Cook dough on griddle or in a skillet over medium high heat until puffy and golden on both sides, 1-2 minutes. Wrap in a kitchen towel and repeat process with remaining dough, stacking and wrapping as you go. Makes 12.

Blueberry Tortilla “Blintzes”

Blueberry Tortilla Blintz

Blueberry Tortilla Blintz

Blueberries seem to be very abundant this year. Even getting some from my fairly new plants. I had some flour tortillas and decided to use them for a quick blueberry dessert. These can be made with pretty much any fruit pie filling or fresh fruit. I had a lot of blueberries so I made a homemade blueberry pie filling. I canned most of it but had enough left over to make some blintzes. While blintzes are traditionally made with crepes, these use the tortillas instead.

To make them just soak some flour tortillas in milk to soften. I normally allow at least 10 minutes for this. Place a tortilla on your work surface and spoon some pie filling in the middle. Fold in the sides until they just touch. Starting on the side nearest you gently fold the blintz up. It should like like a flatter version of an egg roll. Repeat with the rest of the tortillas. Heat some butter up in a skillet and place a few blintzes in at a time. Turn when they get golden on one side and cook until light golden brown on both sides. Serve dusted with powdered sugar or with ice cream, if you prefer. Super easy.

If you want to use fresh berries instead just toss them with some sugar before using.  If you want to make a pie filling for this recipe just cook together fresh berries with a little water and sugar. Once the berries have softened mix a small amount of water with cornstarch and pour into the blueberry mixture, cooking until it thickens. Add the cornstarch mixture slowly so the mixture doesn’t get too thick.

Tortilla Soup

Tortilla Soup

Tortilla Soup

This is one of the dishes we had in class last night. Great night for soup. It’s an easy soup to make and full of flavor. I like to serve it with hot sauce on the side for those who want a spicier soup.

Tortilla Soup

1 onion, sliced thin

1 T. oil

6 c. chicken stock

1/2 -3/4 c. salsa

2 T. chopped cilantro

1/2 t. cumin

2 c. diced cooked chicken

8 small or 4 large tortillas

Heat oil in soup pot and cook onion until tender. Add stock, salsa and seasonings and simmer, covered 10 minutes. Add chicken and heat through. Meanwhile roll tortillas up tightly one at a time and cut cross wise into 1/2-inch wide strips. Divide strips among 4 bowls and ladle in the soup in the bowls. Serves 4.

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