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Friday, February 21, 2014

Flour Tortillas

This recipe came highly recommended by the Cream Puff Girl but along with the recipe came her instruction to use my cast iron skillet. 

I don’t remember when I purchased this skillet or why for that matter but I’m guessing it’s been at least thirty years since. If the skillet could speak it would surely reprimand me for the long years of neglect.

When lifting the skillet from the shelf, one of the reasons it may have been ignored for so long became apparent.  You would need cast iron wrists to be able to use it regularly!  Definitely time to move to the gas stove with this seriously heavy pan as it doesn’t take well to a glass top stove.   

A cast iron skillet is by no means a must to make these tortillas and I’m sure a non-stick pan would produce good results as well.  However, the time was well overdue to use mine.

Since the skillet had never been used before, the initial step of seasoning the pan was required and after finding out how to go about doing it I was ready to give this recipe a try.

The dough was very easy to make, rolled out effortlessly and the tortillas took only seconds to cook.

Is it absolutely necessary to make your own tortillas?

I think not but there’s a certain element of accomplishment and satisfaction that goes along with serving these “beauties” as the Cream Puff Girl put it!

Flour Tortillas
4 cups all-purpose flour
1 ½ teaspoons salt
6 tablespoons vegetable shortening
2 cups water
  1. In a small saucepan bring the 2 cups of water to a boil.
  2. In a large bowl stir the flour and salt together.
  3. Mix in the shortening with your fingers until the mixture resembles coarse meal.
  4. Stir in enough boiling water that the dough holds together and begin by stirring with a spoon since the water is hot but finish working the dough with your hands until it comes together.
  5. Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth, 2 to 5 minutes.  Do not overwork it.
  6. Form the dough into a ball, cover it with plastic wrap and allow to rest for 30 minutes.
  7. Set a well- seasoned cast iron skillet on medium heat.
  8. On a lightly floured surface cut the ball of dough into 6 wedges. Cut each wedge into 3 smaller wedges for a total of 18.
  9. Form each wedge into a ball and using a rolling pin roll into a very thin circle, roughly 7 ½ to 8 inches in diameter.
  10. When the skillet is hot but not smoking, cook the tortilla until slightly puffed, 20 to 30 seconds.
  11. Flip and cook other side for 20 to 30 seconds more until flecked with golden or brown spots, whichever you prefer. Place on a cooling rack
  12. Repeat the process with the remaining 17 wedges.
  13. Allow each tortilla to cool before stacking.

Notes, Tips and Suggestions
  • Freshly made tortillas are soft and perfectly delicious at room temperature.
  • To reheat warm them briefly in a low oven.
  • These keep well in the fridge wrapped in paper towels sealed in a plastic bag and also freeze very well.
  • If you own a never used cast iron skillet or plan to buy one in the future I found this web site helpful on how to season the pan.

1 comment:

  1. The Cream Puff GirlFebruary 27, 2014 at 4:27 PM

    You got the perfect amount of "bubbles" when cooking - very nice. All my pans are cast iron and my wrists are better because of it! I will never go back to stainless steel! I've tried this recipe with 1/2 whole wheat flour. Not as good of texture, but worth it if you're looking for a healthier alternative. Yum. So, chicken fajita night?