‘Great Sauces Transform Good Food into Gourmet’
No tortilla factory in your neighborhood?
Alicia lives in my neighborhood but she was born and raised in Oaxaca, Mexico. She mastered the art of scratch corn tortillas as a young girl. Made fresh with one simple ingredient, you can enjoy these tortillas right in your own home. They’re not as quick as stretching open a package of corn tortillas but they’re easy to make and taste so much better.
Well, there’s a caveat. Alicia exposes a secret, “Now most Mexicans buy tortillas from the
tortilla factory. They make lots of them, everyday, fresh ones you can buy in steamy stacks.” So if you have a factory in your neighborhood, go for it. But if not, invest in an inexpensive tortilla press. I bought mine for a $1 at a garage sale from Yolanda before she moved to Florida. Mexican markets sell them for $12-15. And don’t hesitate to eat them plain right off the griddle.
You might also enjoy Creamy Chicken with Green Chilies, Chicken Fajitas, Chicken Tortilla Soup, Pickled Jalapeños, Taco Salad with Creamy Tomatillo Sauce, Taco Salad Kit MealRecipe, Jabberwocky Burritos, Fiesta Bean Salad, Lime and Tomato Tajicos, Jalapeño Bean Dip, Gazpacho, Dulce de Leche, Tres Leche Cupcakes and Fish Tacos with Pink Adobo Sauce.
Recipe: Corn Tortillas
Prep Time: 10 Minutes | Cook Time: 15 Minutes | Yield: 1 Dozen | Level: Easy
2 cups masa harina
Special Equipment – cast iron or non-stick griddle or pan, gallon ziplock bag or plastic wrap, tortilla press or rolling pin
1 Cut two pieces of plastic in 7-inch circles. A gallon ziplock bag is a little heavier than plastic wrap but either will work fine.
2 Mix masa harina with 1 cup of water in a medium bowl, knead to combine. Add more water 1 tablespoon at a time until the dough is not firm or sticky but moldable. It may need about 4-7 additional tablespoons depending on humidity.
3 Form the dough into about a dozen plum size balls. Keep them covered with plastic wrap. If the dough becomes too dry, mix in a little more water.
4 Heat a cast iron or non stick pan on medium high heat.
5 Meanwhile place a circle of plastic on the tortilla press. Put a ball of dough in the center and slightly flatten. Top with another circle of plastic. Close the press until the tortilla is 1/8-inch thick.
6 Pull the top plastic off. Pull the bottom plastic off and lay on the ungreased, heated pan. Cook for 30-60 seconds on each side until the edges become brown and bubbles form. Place in a tortilla warmer or keep warm in a kitchen towel. Repeat.
If you don’t have a tortilla press you can place the dough ball between 2 sheets of plastic and roll with a rolling pin.
Masa Harina is made from field corn, also called maize. First it’s dried, then soaked in a water and calcium hydroxide or ‘lime’ solution. This step improves the nutrition of the corn flour by releasing the natural niacin and making it easier to digest. Then it’s washed, ground and dried resulting in finely ground flour. It’s inexpensive and has good shelf life so it stores well in your pantry. Maseca is a popular brand and can be found in mexican markets and often in supermarkets.
If you have an oblong cast iron griddle or 12-inch cast iron or non-stick pan you can cook a couple tortillas at a time. Or fire up a couple skillets and make a mini tortilla factory right in your kitchen.
Serve corn tortillas with taco meat, cheese, lettuce, tomatoes and Creamy Tomatillo Sauce.
Taquitos – Roll shredded beef inside, pan fry and drizzle with avocado sauce.
- No substitutions.
Inspiration – Alicia Matamoros