RECIPE: Homemade Corn Tortillas

 

CornTortHead

In our Townhomestead, corn tortillas are more of a staple than bread–which makes sense considering Brian loves tacos more than anything, except maybe motorcycles. And of course, me, right, Brian?

Problem is, nearly ALL commercial corn tortillas have gums or other migraine causing additives, so a couple of years ago he took on the task of learning to make them. Over the years, he’s mastered them, and now, any tortillas but his just taste stale. Considering my mom wants to learn how, I had Brian explain his technique.

HOMEMADE CORN TORTILLAS

What you’ll need:

  • Maseca (a corn flour you can usually find in the baking aisle)
  • Water
  • Salt
  • Optional Lard
  • Camal
  • Thermometer
  • Thin spatula

The Process:

When in doubt use the ratios on the bag. Don’t skimp on the salt, because it greatly affects how the dough acts.

The measurements for four larger corn:

  • 2 Cup Maseca
  • 1 1-2 cup boiling water
  • 1/4 teaspoon Salt
  • 1 Tbsp Lard if using

Mix Maseca and salt, cut Lard in small chunks and work into flour. Pour boiling water, and mix with fork to just blend, then let it sit for a couple of hours under a warm, water-dampened cloth or lid covered glass bowl, until the water and Maseca get all nice and married up to each other. Letting it sit helps the texture.

homemade corn tortillas

After letting it sit, knead it until it sticks together, and not to your hands. To quote the Brian, “Knead it until it feels right.” If you think it needs more liquid, poke fingers in dough to create little holes and add about a teaspoon at a time, then keep kneading. Looking for a playdough like texture. Not too sticky, but holding together.

chile9

Separate into equal sized balls. We like bigger tortillas, so half it, and then half it again, and keep halving until you get palm sized balls, between 2 and 3 ounces each ball.

chile11

Regarding the tortilla press. Brian has tried several, and found the most consistent results with the wooden press over the metal press, so save yourself trouble, and get a wooden one.

Line the press with parchment. A lot of people say to use Saran Wrap, but he says it sticks and much prefers parchment. Take a sheet, fold it in half, and slide it into the press.

chile14

Place the ball between the parchment on the press, and push it down to flatten. Press as hard as you can. The more you press, the thinner your tortilla. Find the strongest person in the house and let them do the pressing.

Open and feel through the parchment before you unwrap to check for thickness. If it feels too thick, that’s okay, just keep pressing.

When you get the desired thinness, pull out the folded sheet of parchment, peel top half back, flip over in your hand, and peel bottom.

chile13

Brian uses a round, flat, cast iron skillet now uses a comal he bought at the Mexican market to cook his tortillas, similar to this one. He prefers it to the cast iron, although cast iron is still fine.

s-l500

Temperature is key to a great tortilla, so get yourself a griddle thermometer, put it on the camal, and get the temperature up to 350. You want to keep it stable between 350-400. .

Tort1Brian has a favorite spatula for tortilla making, a thin metal one that I think my mom gave me with my first apartment. It gets under the tortilla much easier. I bought a second one for him through Amazon, searching for fish spatula.

Put tortilla on. Wait about 10 or 15 seconds, and try to slide it with edge of spatula or hands.

tort2

If it moves, it’s time to flip. If it doesn’t move, work the edges a bit, and it should come loose. Once you flip it, set timer for two minutes. Flip again to the first side, and cook for about a minute and a half.

chile3

All done! Put it in a covered, sealed container, to steam them and keep them soft. We like this Penguin Ice bucket. Perfect size, and insulated.

Tor5

 

And now… go eat some tacos. I know I am!

Until next time…

Later Gators!bikes

Trackbacks & Pings

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *