Monday, October 5, 2009

A better flour tortilla

I have used the same tortilla recipe for about 8 years now, but I've always felt they lacked in the texture department. After having fresh tortillas in the store that had great texture but horrible taste, I set out to find a better tortilla recipe. I ended up mixing my original recipe with a recipe I found online (can't find it now or I'd link it).

I've made these a couple times with minor variations in cooking technique, but tonight's tortillas were the best so I'm set to type it up now. =)

Flour Tortillas-makes 8 large tortillas
2 C. all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp kosher salt (I'm sure regular salt works fine, but I always cook with kosher)
1/4 C vegetable shortening

3/4 C warm milk

  1. Mix together first 4 ingredients, cutting in the shortening with a pastry cutter or two knives or forks.
  2. Add the warm milk a little at a time until completely incorporated.
  3. Flour a workspace and dump out dough. It'll probably be a little sticky, so flour your hands and have a little extra flour on the side. Hand kneed the dough for about 5 min.
  4. Put in a bowl and cover with a damp cloth. Let it sit for about 15-20 min. If it's too tough or rubbery, let it sit a few more min.
  5. After 20 min. cut the dough into 8 equal parts. Roll these pieces into balls.* Flatten into a disk and roll into tortillas. It's okay if they're not quite as large as you want them. Cover and let sit another 5-10 min.**
  6. Warm up a cast iron skillet (or a non-stick pan, but honestly, they cook better on cast iron) Keep it dry-don't add oil or anything. Once the pan is nice and hot, slap your tortillas on about 30 seconds on each side (more or less depending on how hot your pan really is). If your pan is hot enough, they'll start to puff up and get big bubbles. Keep the cooked ones warm under a clean kitchen towel until you're ready to eat. them
*If you used a stand mixer to knead, you may need to let them sit for another 10 min. at this point. If your dough is ever too elastic or rubbery, just let it sit a bit longer to relax.
**I have stacked them in between pieces of wax paper and put them in a ziploc in the fridge for a couple hours. It worked just fine after sitting a couple hours, but the next day the final product was a little brittle and not quite chewy.

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