Living without gluten, casein, soy, eggs and peanuts. Living with ASD and ADHD. Life is good!

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Making Your Own Tortillas

Recently I have tried making both corn tortillas following the directions on the package of a bag of masa flour, and gluten-free flour tortillas made in part with rice flour. Both are good however the kids, DH and I prefer the tortillas with the rice flour in them. And in fact, the latter are the ones the girls were willing to eat.

I have a few tricks up my sleeve in the kitchen. Actually it's semantics. The girls turn their noses up at Spinach Pesto, but when I call it Christmas Sauce, they scarf it up. Same with spagetti sauce...if I call it Valentine Sauce, they can't get enough of it. Same with tortillas...I've been trying to get them to eat the fresh warm tortillas I make but they would not do it. So I cut a tortilla into 4 triangles, called them Mommy's Special Tortilla Chips, and you'd think they'd never tasted something so delicious before. Sheesh.

Making your own tortillas sounds like a lot of work, but it's not. It's really not that time intensive, either, it involves the same amount of time and work as making pancakes. What you need preferably are a tortilla press (which can be found in Mexican grocery stores) and a heavy cast iron pan. The recipe for the rice flour tortillas comes from Living Without. I made one slight modification. I really like this recipe, and I can see myself making it a lot now that the girls will eat tortillas.

Ingredients for Corn Tortillas
2 cups masa flour (I use Maseca)
1/4 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp. baking soda
1 1/4 cups water

Follow the directions for making corn tortillas on the package of the masa flour you have. If using Maseca, whisk together the masa with the salt. Add the water and stir until combined. The dough should not be wet or dry, but be able to hold its shape when you form it into balls. Form dough into 16 balls (they should fit nicely in the cupped palm of your hand). Place on a plate and cover with a damp paper towel until ready to use, which will prevent them from drying out.

Ingredients for Rice Flour Tortillas

1 cup rice flour

1/3 cup potato starch

1/3 cup tapioca starch

1/3 cup chickpea flour

2 tsp. xanthan gum

1 tsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. sugar

1 1/2 tsp. salt

2 tbsp. palm shortening
3/4 cup water

Whisk together the dry ingredients. Cut in the shortening with a pastry blender until the mixture resembles fine meal. Add the water and mix well. The dough should not be sticky or too dry. It should look like this:

Method for tortillas

Heat a skillet or griddle over medium heat. Form tortilla dough into balls about the size of the palm of your hand, like this:

Cut two pieces of wax paper or thick plastic wrap to fit your tortilla press. If necessary, sprinkle with a little corn or rice flour to prevent sticking. Place a ball of dough onto the wax paper on tortilla press.

Press into a disc about 1/8 inch thick.

Remove the wax paper or plastic wrap carefully, and then place tortilla on the hot (medium heat) dry griddle (do not grease). Cook tortillas about 1 minute, or until surface bubbles:

And there are brown flecks on the bottom:

Flip and cook on the other side about 30 seconds or until slightly browned. Keep warm in a tortilla warmer or wrapped in a cloth until ready to serve.

*Top tortillas with guacamole or salsa, dip into soups or hummus, or eat plain just the way they are! Or, use them to make fish tacos. Yum!


Jason Poll said...

I had just about given up on tortillas. I think I just desperately need to mail-order a tortilla press and this whole process will be a lot easier/quicker. Time is in such short supply around here's ridiculous!

Thanks for the modified tortilla recipe. I'm going to copy-n-paste it into our recipe wiki for safe keeping. :)

Erin said...

A tortilla press is really a fabulous thing. You can get one from Amazon.

Anonymous said...

Hi Erin,

For the rice tortillas, do you have any suggestions on what I could use to replace the chickpea flour. I just don't have any right now. Also just found out I am allergic to corn, too. (on top of soy & gluten) UGH. :(

Thanks for your help.
Andrea L.

Erin said...

Hi Andrea,
I have not done this but I think you could substitute sorghum or aramanth flours for the chickpea. If you try this, please let me know how it turns out!
Good luck,

Anonymous said...

Hi Erin,

I made these torillas and used sorghum flour as you suggested. I also accidently used potato flour intead of potato starch but they really held together well and had good texture. I will use a little less salt next time even though it adds that "tortilla" flavor.

Thanks for the recipe. It's a keeper. I may try it next time exactly as you originally made it; just need to get the right ingredients. :) Thank you.

Andrea L.

Erin said...

Hi Andrea,
I'm so glad they worked out for you! Using potato flour sounds like a happy accident. I might try that. Actually replacing chickpea flour with potato flour might work well too.
:) erin