Laissez Faire

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Diary of an Inconsistent Cook #29: Homemade Authentic Mexican Flour Tortillas

Who doesn’t love bread?   Leavened or Unleavened.   Flat or tall.   Delicate or robust.    Plain or not.    Baked or fried.      And let’s not forget the close cousins of bread:   muffins, scones, cakes, popovers, yorkshire puddings, and pie crusts.   So cheap and easy to make at home.

Flour tortillas and roti are very similar in their basic construction.   You don’t use a tortilla press like you would for corn tortillas because of the flour gluten.  They do make a press and cook type of gadget that allows you to press and cook at the same time, but who has a fancy gadget like that just sitting in their cabinet?

I’ve made flour tortillas before with varying degrees of success.     I used a new recipe this time that looked like it would give me what I wanted.   Though I doubt the are any where near perfect, there were none left after we had them for lunch.    And really, all that matters, is that they taste good and were easy to make!

It has been a while so I consulted a video and link from Mommypalooza.   When you want to learn for free how to make Mexican food, one needs to find a Mexican mom or grandmother to show you.    If you have no neighbors, then YouTube can get you pretty close.    When they emphasize, “it doesn’t need to be exact” or use phrases like “just enough” and “about this much”, you know you’ve found the right resource.


Let’s Make Some Bread!

Make your dough and separate them into discs.  I made 8.

Make your dough and separate them into discs. I made 8.

The recipe called for:

1 3/4 cups of flour
1/4 cup solid vegetable shortening (I used LARD — rendered pork fat — because I had it)
1/4 tsp salt
2 tsp baking powder

If you don’t have baking powder, you probably could substitute with baking soda plus cream of tartar (or other acid such as vinegar or lemon juice).       It helps to make the tortillas soft and puffy.

Your first two tortillas are always crap.   They still taste good though.

Your first two tortillas are always crap. They still taste good though.

Roll out the dough thin and cook on a griddle.  Mine is a stove top griddle, not an electric so getting the temperature right is always a bit tricky.



Oh, yeah.  Now we’re cooking!

Take a picture before the kids get to the bowl

Take a picture before the kids get to the bowl

I could have cooked them a bit longer I suppose, but they were good and didn’t last long.

We had Steamed Tuna Tacos!

We had Steamed Tuna Tacos!

This may have been the first Bahamian and Mexican fusion ever (with a dash of Thai from the Sriracha)!     And just as a side note, tortillas and some Native American fry breads are very similar in formulation.  And yes, I will be making some of that.

Have you ever made flour tortillas before?    Will you try this easy recipe?



11 comments on “Diary of an Inconsistent Cook #29: Homemade Authentic Mexican Flour Tortillas

  1. lynn k scott
    March 11, 2015

    I would have to check to make sure, but this looks almost exactly like the recipe I have been using for the last 4 years to make homemade tortillas. There is nothing better. I normally use Crisco, because I always have it on hand and I love that my food processor has a pastry blade. I roll all mine out by hand. I’m excited to see this recipe is used by someone else. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    March 11, 2015

    My mother and both grandmothers made flour tortillas from scratch EVERY night for dinner – all are now in heaven – your post reminded me of the immense joy of watching my mom make tortillas from scratch (no recipe, just a little of this and that) and waiting for the last few to be made into sopapillas, just for my sister and me. Have you ever made tamales from scratch? This is just as much fun!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Laissez Faire
      March 11, 2015

      I think I did make tamales from scratch once many years ago. They didn’t turn out all that great 🙂 Then again I am also not in love with tamales. I like them, but find them just to be okay 🙂


  3. Lety C
    March 11, 2015

    Your mom is amazing! My mother used to make flour tortillas just like yours! Haha! Not anymore 😦

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Pingback: Diary of an Inconsistent Cook #30: Native American Fry Bread (Cherokee Style) | Laissez Faire

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This entry was posted on March 11, 2015 by in bread, cooking, DIY and tagged , , , , , , , , , , .

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