|Here’s a little quickie recipe this time around, for homemade flour tortillas.I’ve heard of people that don’t make their own tortillas, but I don’t think I’ve ever met one in person. The way I hear it, they buy tortillas from a supermarket – no kidding! Okay, I’m being a little sarcastic, but so what?
Here in the Southwest, many of us make our own tortillas, unless we stop by the tortilleria (tortilla factory) to pick some up for the evening’s dinner. If you’ve ever compared a fresh tortilla to a supermarket version, you know why.
Right here, I was going to talk about things like regional differences in tortillas, corn vs. flour, etc., but I have a feeling I’d lose most of my audience through boredom – so I won’t.
This is a very easy recipe, only four ingredients. One of the ingredients is lard. You heard me – lard. Saturated fat, cholesterol, trans fat, L-A-R-D! Now that we have that out in the open, don’t you all have an old granny or great aunt somewhere in your family that makes the best pie crusts in the world? Chances are, she uses lard in the dough. You just don’t get the same flavor, texture or consistency from shortening. And unless you’re like me, you probably won’t eat a dozen at one sitting – moderation is key (or so I hear).
Prep notes – if you have a food processor that you paid more than 6 bucks for (I don’t), use that to mix the dough – if you can control the speed and/or pulse it, that’s the ticket. Me, I use my trusty KitchenAid with the paddle attachment (not the dough hook).
To help with the blending process, dice up the cold lard into small pieces, and don’t worry when your dough starts out looking quite lumpy – it’s supposed to.
Also, don’t worry if you’re not able to achieve perfect circles when you roll out your tortillas, it takes practice. I guarantee that your 10th tortilla will look better than your 1st, but the good news is, they’ll all taste the same.
Serve them warm, and don’t keep them for more than a day – otherwise they turn into supermarket tortillas.
Is everyone ready? Fine – swallow a handful of Lipitor, and let us begin…
|3 cups||All-purpose flour|
|¾ cup||Very hot water|
|Combine the flour, lard and salt in the food processor (or mixing bowl) and pulse (or mix) until the lard chunks are pea-sized or smaller.Slowly add half the hot water; continue to pulse/mix. Add the rest of the water, and continue to mix until the dough smoothes out. If the dough has dry places, carefully add more hot water a little at a time, until your dough reaches a stiff, but workable consistency.
Dump onto a floured counter or stone, and knead for a few minutes until the dough is smooth.
Make 10 evenly sized balls from the dough, and cover with a sheet of plastic wrap for 30-45 minutes (resting the dough portions will make it easier to roll and shape).
Flatten each ball by hand and flour the top. Starting from the center, roll evenly toward the outside until you have a thin, flat tortilla about 8” in diameter.
Preheat an ungreased griddle or large flat-bottom pan to medium-high heat. After forming a tortilla, gently pick it up and lay on the griddle or pan. You should see bubbles forming on top of the tortilla. Cook for approximately 30 seconds, and carefully use your fingers and a fork to flip it over. The cooked side should have several light brown areas on it.
When cooking is complete, use the fork to gently fold the tortilla into quarters and place into a basket or tortilla warmer lined with a kitchen towel.
Repeat for the remainder of the tortillas.