Sunday mornings to me used to mean fresh flour tortillas, eggs, beans; your typical Tex-Mex breakfast tacos. Since I hadn’t really done that in such a long time (we’ve been doing pancakes, french toasts, fried eggs, etc. for awhile now) I decided to this a.m. I felt very accomplished doing it all from scratch, too. all told, they’re actually very easy to do, even without a pre-made mix, and they’re light years better than the store bought brands. It’s actually kind of relaxing, kneading and shaping, rolling, then cooking. to me they’re best lightly covered with melted butter, rolled up, then eaten …
3 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
5 tablespoons shortening (or lard, if that’s what you’re into)
about 1 cup warm water (doesn’t have to be hot)
Mix the dry ingredients in a bowl. Cut in the shortening (use a pastry cutter, two knives, a fork, or your hands). Add the water a little at a time, mixing it in until you get a dough that comes together and is soft (not sticky). you’ll know if the texture is right or not. you definitely want it soft enough to manipulate how you want it, but not so soft it falls apart. knead it lightly for a few minutes. Now you can pull off dough pieces and shape these a couple of different ways. You can either roll them into small balls (this dough recipe is supposed to make 12 decent sized tortillas – i’m stingy and made more than that) or shape them into small disk-type things like so:
all that is, is turning your dough piece in a circular way tucking the ends under as you go. if you do it like that, you end up with small patties of dough like this:
that’s really hard to describe, without showing. you might have to come to my house and see for yourself if you want to do it that way. otherwise, just roll ’em into little balls
moving on … i let the dough balls rest at least 10-15 minutes while i’m heating my comal. while we’re on the subject, i believe that everybody in the world who likes tortillas should purchase a comal (a flat griddle pan). otherwise, i guess you can use a castiron skillet, or a regular griddle. my pan is a cast-off from my mom… i love it to pieces. but i’m moving ahead of myself. heat your pan up to about medium-high. meanwhile, sprinkle some flour on the counter and start rolling. if you’ve shaped these into small balls, press down on them lightly with your hand to flatten them a little. when i first learned to do these i was all of 8 years old. needless to say i made some funky shaped tortillas. i learned how to roll them out in a circular shape by rolling, turning the dough a quarter turn, then continuing to roll, turning it after i’ve rolled over it once. it should look like this:
you want these fairly thin, but not paper thin. next, lay them gently on the hot comal. they shouldn’t stick if you have a good pan but i’d wait a minimum of 20-25 seconds before flipping them over. on medium-high heat it doesn’t take long for a side to brown. sometimes they get puffy like this:
these are fun. just poke them with a butterknife and let the steam out. once done, you’ve got a pile like this:
we filled ours with: fried potatoes, homemade refried beans, scrambled eggs,and bacon.
now if that isn’t Sunday morning breakfast perfection, i just don’t know what is.