Feb 25, 2011

Tortillas!

In this blog, I'd like to cover all different kinds of breads as well as some requests I've had from my family and friends. Today I get to make one of my favorite kinds of breads, tortillas. The tortilla has very few ingredients, 3 to be exact. Water, Salt and Masa Harina, a flour that is made from cooking dried corn kernels with lime and then grinding them up to a flour consistency. You can find it HERE.

Today I'm Making Tortillas

I usually mix the salt and flour around a bit and then add in the warm water until the dough is soft and fluffy and sticks together.

The Masa Dough

This next step was not on the bag of masa but someone told me to "rest" the dough for 20 minutes before forming in small balls. I covered the dough with a damp flour sack towel so it wouldn't dry out.

Letting it Rest

In case you have never seen one, this is a very simple tortilla press. You can make tortillas without one, but it's alot more difficult to get them all the same shape, thickness and size. And since it was under $15, very affordable.

Tortilla Press

You can see a piece of plastic wrap in between the layers. This is to prevent the dough from sticking to the press when pressure is applied.

Press closed

I get my pans ready before I begin the process. I'm using two today so I can keep the process moving along. You want the heat under the tortillas to be about medium high.

The Baking Pans are Prepared

And I usually get an area ready I can put the tortillas after they are cooked to keep them warm.

Where They Will Go

Now you get to play! Pick up a small amount of dough, compress it just a bit and roll into a ball shape like this. Mine was actually too large this time. It should be about 1 in. or so.

Forming

Place onto the middle of the lined tortilla press and press all the way down. Open again and...

Put Into Press

Voile! A beautiful little tortilla. Nice and round and flat. Pick up the plastic wrap and transfer the tortilla to your hand then then into the pans. Cook for about a minute on each side or until you see a few little brown areas develop.

The Pressed "raw" Tortilla

Repeat until all the dough looks like this. I nice little plateful of homemade corn tortillas. You can use them in any recipe that calls for corn tortillas.

Making A Plate Full

Since I made these right before lunch, I decided to make a couple of tostados. I took a couple of the tortillas and fried them just a bit in corn oil.

Using What I Made

I had some cooked black beans in my refrigerator so I took them out, heated them up and sprinkled on some "latin seasoning" I found at my local dollar store.

Mix the Black Beans

I like to keep my black beans whole rather than making them refried.

Tortillas Layered With Beans

Next, I added some shredded chicken I made in earlier in the week. Its just boneless chicken tenders and thighs (out of the freezer) with a jar of salsa and just a bit of chicken broth and the "latin seasoning" shown above cooked for about 10 minutes in the pressure cooker.

Layer on Some Chicken

A little lettuce and cheese....

Lettuce

And let's not forget my very favorite hot sauce in the world...

My Favorite Hot Sauce!

And here you have it, Tostados! These were absolutely delicious and you could really taste the tortilla and how fresh it was!

The Finished Tostados!

I hope you give these a try. They are really very simple and fun to make if you have the right supplies.

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