Friday, March 12, 2010

Homemade Flour Tortillas

We love Mexican food at our house, and homemade tortillas just takes it to a whole new level. Of course it's way more work than buying tortillas, but it's worth it. They are soft and pliable and delicious. I got this recipe from my mother-in-law and I've made it several times and several ways. The recipe calls for shortening or lard, but this last time I made them I used butter and it was great! Of course butter is way better for you than shortening and I don't usually have lard around, so from now on I'll be using butter. You may even be able to use oil, but I've never tried it. Also, it says to divide into 12 pieces. I like my tortillas a little bigger, so if you want 6-8" tortillas, do 12; or if you want 10" do 8.

Oh, also, I tend to think they become softer if you let them rest, covered with a towel or something, for a little while before you dig in, so I usually make them a little ahead of time (I sometimes stick them in an un-zipped ziploc bag while they're warm). The heat kind of keeps them moist and they seem to be softer and easier to work with that way.

Flour Tortillas

4 c. flour
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
4 T. butter, shortening, or lard
1 1/2 c. warm water

In mixing bowl combine dry ingredients. Cut in fat (butter, shortening, etc.). Add warm water, a small amount at a time to form a dough (you may not need all of it; this part is kind of like making pie dough). Knead dough until smooth and elastic. Cover and let stand 10-15 minutes. Divide dough into 8 or 12 equal-sized pieces and flatten with hands. On floured surface, roll out each piece of dough as thin as you possibly can! The thinner the better because they will thicken up when you cook them. Cook on a hot ungreased griddle about 3 minutes on each side until lightly brown.

Eat plain, with butter, cheese, or stuffed with goodness like we did: spanish rice, shredded chicken, salsa, guacamole, lettuce, sour cream, tomatoes, and cheese.
Source: Adapted from Debbie Nowland, my mother-in-law :)


Joyful Noise said...

WOW!!!! I am so proud of you!!!! I haven't done these in years, and you are right, butter is much better for you than shortening or lard! So, so proud of you - and thanks for the acknowledgement. It reminds me that I once knew how to cook!

October Sunshine said...

Sarah, these sound awesome. I am sure you have tried this before but my darling neighbor taught a cooking class at Enrichment last summer and shared the idea (for a good home storage recipe). It is so yummy and EASY! In the morning take a jar of salsa pour it in the crockpot with desired amount of chicken breast (or I use tenders) and let it cook all day until the chicken falls apart. Before you eat shred up the chicken in all that yummy salsa. She uses the tortillas you have to cook from the store in the refrigerated section (they taste like cafe rio) but this recipe would be just as good. Load them up with your favorite toppings. It is delicious. We love to can our own salsa and so I just grab a jar of it and throw it in the crockpot in the morning and there you have dinner on a totally crazy night. You can also serve it over a plate of rice if you want to try it another way. It is delicious and easy. Dana Day...:)