Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Flour Tortillas - A Baker's Odyssey Personal Challenge #28

We seem to go through a lot of tortillas in our house. We use them for the usual Mexican dishes but also for wraps, to eat with soups or just general hunger busting. So when I  was deciding what to try next in my personal baking challenge using A Baker's Odyssey by Greg Patent, I couldn't go past the Flour Tortillas. Using basic ingredients you can have warm, preservative free, homemade tortillas in no time at all.
 
Don't let the lard frighten you. It is scary but consider 2 tablespoons divided amongst 12 large tortillas. I guess you could use butter and Greg also suggests vegetable shortening.
 
Flour Tortillas
4 cups all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
2 tablespoons lard
1/4 cup half and half ( I used milk)
3/4 cup warm water
vegetable oil for cooking
 

In a large bowl mix the flour, salt and baking powder then rub in the lard. Combine the half and half (or milk) with the water and add to the flour. Using your hand form into a stiff dough.



I found the dough was rather scraggly and needed more warm water. I added just a few drops to bring it together.

Knead for 5 minutes then shape into a ball, wrap in plastic and rest for 1 hour.

 
 Unwrap the dough and cut into two pieces. Roll each into a log about 9 inches long and cut each into 6 even pieces. This is what I love about Greg Patent's recipes, most would just say divided into 12 equal pieces. Instead Greg teaches you the simple way of doing these things such as dividing dough.
Ok, so rest the balls of dough again for 10 minutes. This will make the dough easier to roll.
 Take a ball of dough onto a lightly floured surface. Press out into a round shape with your fingertips then roll with a rolling pin to about 8 or 9 inches (that's about 20 cm)  and they will be nice and thin.

 Heat a large cast iron skillet over medium heat. Add a little oil with a brush or paper towel. Put in your first tortilla. It will bubble up after a few seconds and start getting brown underneath. After 30 check that it has brown spots underneath and then flip.



It may puff up but that's ok press it back down with paper towels. Brown for about 30 seconds then remove. Don't overcook the tortillas. Repeat with the remaining dough.

 
So, tortillas. Will I make them again?
Yep, you bet but I think these tortillas needed a bit more moisture and I would add a little more water. Maybe it was because I used milk instead of half and half which we don't have in Australia. The extra fat in the half and half would probably add the moisture needed.
 I think this one needs more experimenting.
 

3 comments:

Ale said...

Hi Marcellina your tortillas are perfect!!! I make them as well 'cause I love mexican dishes...brava!

Mary said...

I am really impressed. These look professionally made. This is one challenge you've met with flying colors. I hope your week is going well. Have a great day. Blessings...Mary

Katrina said...

Yum! Those look so much better than store bought.