Homemade Tortillas

It took me not once, not twice, but three times to figure out a secret to making those tortillas. And the secret is... ta-da... flour!! Yep! Just plain old flour and those tortillas need a lot of it and I mean a lot!!! The first time I made them I thought I'd go crazy from rolling them. The tortillas stuck to the rolling pin and to the surface, they refused to even resemble something close to a circle and they just wouldn't become thin at all. It was a nightmare. Sure, they tasted good, but the effort just wasn't worth it. Then I tried it the second time and... same result. It took me about two years to get over the drama of making those tortillas and I thought that maybe, just maybe, third time would be a charm and finally I was right. And it turned out to be so easy - just put lots, lots, lots of flour while rolling them. I think I used way more than a cup of flour for the surface and the rolling pin. The tortillas finally were very thin and they even remotely resembled a circle. So, yes, it's worth it. They are amazingly tasty, light, soft and crispy at the same time and buttery.

You can easily make a vegan version of these and actually the original recipe was vegan and it called for shortening, but I don't use that ingredient in my cooking, so I substituted it for room temperature butter, but feel free to use non-hydrogenated margarine for a vegan treat.


recipe adapted from The Big Book of Bread by Anne Sheasby

for 12 tortillas

  • All-purpose flour - 1 1/2 cups (plus a lot more for rolling)
  • Salt - 1 teaspoon
  • Baking powder - 1 teaspoon
  • Butter, room temperature - 3 tablespoon
  • Warm water - 2/3 cups

- Combine the flour, salt, and baking powder in a large bowl.
- Lightly rub in the butter.
- Make a well in the center, then add enough water, mixing to form a soft dough.
- Knead the dough lightly for 1-2 minutes, then cover and let rest for 10 minutes.
- Divide the dough into 12 equal portions.
- Roll out each portion on a heavily floured surface to form a very thin round.
- Brush out the excess of flour from the tortilla.
- Heat a large non-stick pan until very hot, then add a tortilla and cook for 1.5-2 minutes or until the surface starts to bubble and the underside is speckled brown.
- Turn the tortilla over and brown the other side for about 30 seconds.
- While the tortilla is cooking, roll out another round and repeat.
- You might need to brush away some burned flour from the pan in between cooking the tortillas.
- To re-heat, wrap them in foil and place in a preheated oven at 180C (350F) for about 5 minutes.

I decided to participate in a Homemade Tortillas Challenge on What's Cooking? site

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Posted on May 20, 2009 and filed under Recipe.