Fleur de Lis

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Saturday, April 24, 2010

Basic Corn Tortillas

I've had a tortilla press for quite some time now and finally decided that it's time to make tortillas at home.  From scratch.  I am totally embarrassed at how simple and fast these came together.  Next time flour tortillas.  I'm not a true fan of the corn version, but Sweet Harold loves them.  (Do you notice a trend here that I've not mentioned one thing he doesn't love?)

This recipe makes 12 corn tortillas.  You'll need a tortilla press, plastic wrap, masa flour and a sense of adventure.

2 cups masa harina flour
1 1/3 cups warm water
1/4 t. salt
In a large bowl mix the masa, water and salt together with your hands until well combined.  Knead the dough very well until moist and smooth, but not sticky, about 3 - 5 minutes.  If the dough is at all crumbly or seems too dry, moisten hands with water, and knead some more.  If the dough sticks to your hands, add a little more masa, 1 T. at a time.  You don't have to worry about overworking masa dough because there's no gluten that can toughen as there is in wheat flour doughs.

Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the dough rest about 20 minutes before using.  Form the dough into 12 equal balls, about golf ball size.

Keep the dough lightly covered with plastic wrap while working, to prevent the dough from drying out.  Heat a medium skillet over medium high heat.

Open the tortilla press and place 1 piece of plastic on the bottom of the press.  Put a ball of dough on the plastic and lay another piece of plastic on top of the dough.

Lower the hinged lid quite firmly to form a round tortilla.  Open the lid and lift the plastic wrap onto the palm of your hand.  Carefully peel off the top piece of plastic.  Pick up the tortilla from underneath, with the bottom piece of plastic still attached.  Flip the tortilla over in your hand and peel off the bottom piece of plastic.


Lay the tortilla on the hot pan.  Cook 20 to 30 seconds or until the edges look dry.  With a flexible spatula, flip the tortilla over, and cook about 1 minute.  Turn again and cook 15 seconds.  Put the hot tortilla between folds of a clean dish towel or a tortilla keeper.  Repeat with remaining dough.

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