Friday, February 18, 2011

Homemade Flour Tortillas {Brings Back Memories}

The other day I posted a recipe for Slow Cooker Chicken Posole. In that post I mentioned that I would add my homemade flour tortilla recipe for my next post.  So without further delay you guessed it today's recipe is for Homemade Flour Tortillas

When we eat at authentic Mexican Restaurants my favorite part of the meal is the flour tortillas that are served.
Nothing can compare to the flavor of flour tortillas made from scratch. When I make Mexican inspired soups or stews at home, I always try to serve flour tortillas along side. 

 Growing up my mom mostly used store bought flour tortillas. I'm pretty sure she used them as a time saver because she worked outside the home. She cooked everything from scratch, but I do remember her using a few convenience items.

Now when my step dad's mom would come to visit us it was homemade flour tortillas all the way. I would get so excited when I knew she was coming for a visit. Flour tortilla's was the first thing she would always make after she arrived. I remember how I loved to sit on the counter and watch her do her magic. In my book she was simply amazing.

Grandma Gutierrez would roll, flip and shape all the tortillas. Each one would come out perfectly round every time. I remember her staying in the kitchen all afternoon just rolling, cooking and stacking all those homemade flour tortillas. All of us kids would run through the kitchen grabbing a few at a time and heading back outside to play.


Needless to say her pile of tortillas never really did get taller, and pretty much just stayed the same. Sometimes I would sneak back into the house and hide under the table just waiting for her to leave the room so I could grab just one more flour tortilla.
 

Looking back I think she always knew I was there, but she never lead on that she saw me. I would just sit, watch and wait. I'm so sad that Grandma Gutierrez is no longer with us, but I'm happy to have the memories she gave me.


Every time I make homemade flour tortilla's I think of her, and it always brings a smile to my face. I don't have her exact recipe for her wonderful homemade tortillas, but the one I do have comes pretty close.

I have included a few step by step photos to help you along the way. In a large bowl add the flour, salt, baking powder and shortening/lard. Using you fingers cut in the shortening until the mixture resembles pea size pieces.

Add the hot water and mix together using your hands or a wooden spoon until the mixtures starts to form. Knead on a floured surface for 5 - 10 minutes or until the mixture is smooth and elastic. Form the dough into a ball and let the dough rest in a covered bowl for 10 minutes.

Pinch off the dough into 12 equal pieces and roll each piece into golf ball size ball. Place the balls back into the bowl and cover and let the dough balls rest again for 20 minutes. While the dough is resting preheat your griddle or cast iron pan on med - high heat. Flatten each dough ball a bit and then Roll out on a floured surface forming a circle.

The tortillas should be thin rather than thick. Place onto the hot skillet, and cook until bubbly. Flip and continue cooking the other side. Each side should cook about 30 seconds. Keep the cooked tortillas warm while you continue rolling and cooking the remaining tortillas.






Flour Tortillas

Ingredients:

2 - cups all purpose flour
1 - teaspoon baking powder
1/2 - teaspoon salt
5 - tablespoons vegetable shortening or lard
3/4 - cup hot water

Directions:
In a large bowl add the flour, salt, baking powder and shortening. Using you fingers cut in the shortening until the mixture resembles pea size pieces. 

Add the hot water and mix together using your hands or a wooden spoon until the mixtures starts to form. Knead on a floured surface for 5 - 10 minutes or until the mixture is smooth and elastic. 

Form the dough into a ball. Place the dough into a covered bowl and let the dough rest for 10 minutes.

Pinch off the dough into 12 equal pieces and roll each piece into golf ball size ball. Place the balls back into the bowl and cover and let the dough balls rest for 20 minutes. 

Preheat your griddle or cast iron pan on med - high heat. Flatten each dough ball a bit and then Roll out on a floured surface forming a circle.

To make a round shape roll out the dough and then make a 1/4 of a turn of the circle and then roll and make another 1/4 of a turn. Keep doing this until the dough is rolled out to 1/8 inch thick.

Your tortillas should be thin rather than thick. Place onto the hot skillet, and cook until bubbly with light brown spots. Flip and continue cooking the other side. Each side should cook about 30 seconds.

Keep the cooked tortillas warm while you continue rolling and cooking the remaining tortillas.

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26 comments:

Angie said... #

The last time I tried to make flour tortillas the turned out like shot-put disks....I had to throw them away. I would like to give your recipe and technique a try. Thanks for sharing.

Texicana said... #

My mom made the best homemade tortillas and I figure she was Grandmother Guiterrez's age too. Sadly, my mom is also on the other side but our stories are very similar. We lived an Anglo neighborhood and we were the only Hispanics in our neighborhood. On mom's day off, she'd do the same thing, standing at the kitchen table doing her tortilla kitchen witch magic. All the neighborhood kids could smell the tortillas cooking and they'd beg us to bring them some. Of course we shared and delivered them slathered them with real butter. The aroma of those tortillas lingers as does the memory of the love my mother put into making them. Thank you for sharing your story. I'm going to make some homemade tortillas this weekend.

Stephani said... #

Thanks to Tina and Texicana for the lovely, heartwarming memories; I wish I could have been there with you! I can't wait to try my hand at making my own tortillas for the first time :-)

Dawnda said... #

Oh my - I love flour tortillas so much! That is one thing I can never get enough when I go to a mexican restaurant to eat. I have never even thought about making them at home but reading your recipe, I am going to give it a whirl. Thank you so much for sharing.

Leslie said... #

Tortillas are awesome..I have never had the pleasure of having homemade ones! yum

Tammy said... #

thanks for sharing, sounds wonderful! I love fresh and puffy tortillas, so soft and perfect goodness! please click on my name and visit my new food blog, look forward to hearing from you

Cooking with K said... #

Thanks for sharing this wonderful recipe for flour tortillas...did not realize they are so easy to make. Enjoyed hearing your Grandma memories too.

Coleen's Recipes said... #

I plan to make these this weekend, I'm looking forward to it. How hot is the water for this recipe?

Tina at Mommy's Kitchen said... #

Hi Coleen just hot tap water. I have read that some people use milk, but I have never tried that version.

Sherry from Alabama said... #

What sweet memories you have. Your tortillas look perfect, but mine have never turned out very well. I cook most things from scratch but swallow my pride and buy my tortillas.

Sherry @ A Happy Valentine

Miranda said... #

I was just looking online for homemade tortilla recipes last night! Then as I am catching up on my rss reader...there you are! Thanks!

Caitlin said... #

I tried these this weekend. I've never made tortillas before, but they turned out very tasty!! I put them on my blog, linking to your site of course. Great recipe, definitely one I'll make again! I don't think I'll buy store-bought tortillas anymore!

http://sisters-in-the-kitchen.blogspot.com/2011/02/homemade-flour-tortillas.html

Anonymous said... #

I have tried so many tortilla recipes in the past with no so good results. This recipe turned out perfect....the only bad thing is my husband wants them all the time. My grandmother would be so proud. Thanks you for such an easy recipe.

SocialKim said... #

I am so happy to see this recipe! It's nearly exactly the same as the one I make, handed down from my Great Grandmother Rosales and my Grandma Contreras. I don't make them as often as I used to but when I do, the whole family is happy. So much better than those alien store tortillas.

Anonymous said... #

I wondering if the tortillas will freeze well or keep in the frig?

Anonymous said... #

I have been testing this recipe. I used to make tortillas all the time when the kids were little but haven't in a while and I forgot how I made them. After 3 batches, the perfect combination for me was to use 2 tbsp of butter and 3 tbsp of lard in place of the shortening. The butter added just a little more salt flavor that I thought it needed and the lard gave it a nice flavor boost. Thanks for sharing, I will be making these often now!!! The tortillas will freeze, keep in the fridge or even on the counter. I let them cool off by laying them out on the counter then put them into a freezer bag. They don't stick together, can be warmed up in the microwave and taste just like coming off the stove.

Anonymous said... #

These turned out pretty awesome. Pretty close to my grandmas, which im trying to achieve! I'm about to make another batch though & this time im actually going to add some more salt. Great recipe though!

Anonymous said... #

I've been trying to make tortillas for the past week and can't seem to get them to stay soft. They harden very quickly and its odd because i followed the directions closely.. Any suggestions as to why my tortillas harden?? :( they also have multiple brown spots all over instead of a few brown dots here and there..

Anonymous said... #

I've never made fresh tortillas but have been seriously considering it since I cannot seem to find anything in the stores that I consider excellent. One question about your technique: instead of kneading the dough for 5-10 minutes, would it be OK to use the dough hook on my mixer? I have some injuries which would prevent me from kneading the dough that long AND then rolling out the dough balls to flat discs.

Linda Strayhorn said... #

This sounds similar to the tortillas I learned to make growing up. But we never put baking soda or hot water. Just flour, salt, shortening and tap water. My Tia Fay and mother taught me how to cook many Mexican dishes before they pasted. I still make many of them for my kids and think of them when I do. Thanks for sharing your recipes with us.

Anonymous said... #

I have to say there is nothing like Home made Tortilla's. When I go to the Mexican restaurants here where I live, that is my favorite part. I never knew how to make them scratch, but I can tell you I am going to start making them now thanks to your recipe!!! Thank you so much for the heartwarming tale and the recipe!!

Betsy'sBest said... #

Love it!!

Anonymous said... #

They are similar to lefse but made with flour not potatoes. I love them both.

Natascha Barz said... #

I made them today but I mixed oat flakes within the flour. Everything turned out perfectly. A very healthy and tasty meal. For the filling I made chicken-peaces in a pan and spiced them nicely. For cream I took mayonnaise and curd and some herbs and garlic. As another filling we had salad and tomatoes, cucumber and peppers - that was fantastic :) Thank you so much for the recipe. The amount I made was good for 12 Tortillas - as we have 5 children up to 9 years old, it was just enough :D

Anonymous said... #

We just a had family get together..my mom and my tia made lots of tortilla's. It was such fun to hear them speaking of the old days...and then teaching the younger generation how to make them. It was a great visit and more great memories. Will have to try this recipe. Thanks for sharing

Annie said... #

I JUST WANTED TO COMMENT THAT I KNOW HOW YOU FEEL ABOUT MEMORIES AND EATING. ;)
MY GRAMMAS BOTH MADE TORTILLAS AND MY MOM AND NOW ME, MY DAUGHTER AND EVEN MY GRANDDAUGHTER AND GRANDSON!
I LOVE MAKING THEM FRESH. WE WERE RAISED ON MEXICAN FOOD AND NOW THE GRANDKIDS ARE BEING RAISED WITH IT! THANKS!