How To Make Flour Tortillas

If you've ever been to Mexico, chances are that you've seen women effortlessly rolling out tortilla after tortilla. Although flour tortillas are actually much harder to make than they appear – especially if you're watching someone with decades of practice – it is a skill that you can learn. It's worth the effort, especially when you consider how much better flour tortillas taste when made by hand!

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups of all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 1/4 cup cold vegetable shortening
  • 1 1/4 cup warm water.

Lard is traditionally used, but most people today prefer to use vegetable shortening for health reasons.

Directions:

  1. Mix dry ingredients for the tortillas. Combine the flour, salt, and baking powder in a large mixing bowl.
  2. Add the other tortilla ingredients. Cut in the vegetable shortening using a pastry blender or your clean hands. Blend this until it is mixed evenly. Add the water, and make a ball out of the dough.
  3. Knead the dough. Knead the dough for approximately five minutes on a lightly floured surface. Let the dough “rest” at room temperature for at least 30 minutes.
  4. Cut the dough into 16 equal pieces. Roll each piece up into a ball, place it on a baking sheet, and cover it with plastic wrap. Let the dough sit this way for about 45 minutes.
  5. Roll out the tortillas. Again on a lightly floured surface, roll out each ball of dough into a circle. You can cook the tortillas immediately or store them stacked, with a layer of waxed paper between each one. If you store them, it is best to cover them with a damp cloth so that they don't dry out.
  6. Cook the tortillas. The traditional way to cook flour tortillas – which also provides the best taste – is to use an ungreased cast iron skillet or griddle. Cook the flour tortillas over medium heat until they are a light golden brown, then flip them and cook on the other side.

Flour tortillas are delicious on their own or with a variety of fillings. Try serving them warm with butter or rolling them around beans or a meat mixture. The tortillas are sure to be a hit no matter how you serve them!

 

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