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- Article author: Wiebke Liu
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As you are cooped up in your home, this is the time to get your tortilla making game on. From beginning to hot-steaming tortillas on the table, it only takes 30 minutes, and you'll have extra tortillas for the following day. Best of all, you can make these tortillas from masa flour out of paper bags - so you can skip the pre-cooked tortillas in plastic pouches!
All you need is masa harina, which is nixtamalized corn flour*. In the Southwest and West Coast any conventional grocery store should have masa flour, usually under the brand name 'Maseca.'
Finding masa harina is more tricky elsewhere. Here in London, we head to our local specialty food stores that carries Latin American foods. They stock masa harina near the cans of mole and salsas.
After a few test-runs, we discovered the secret to a perfect tortilla.
The magic lies all the Tortilla-Toasting-Timing.
Our shorthand to time your tortillas is "20-80-20" as in "20 seconds-80 seconds-20 seconds".
Read on for all the detailed scoop:
To make your own corn tortillas from scratch, without plastic, you just need masa, salt, water, parchment paper, a skillet, and a bowl with a tea towel or cloth napkin.
If you have one, pull out your tortilla press. If you don't have a press not to worry, you can shape your tortillas also by hand or press them with a flat-bottomed pan.
Here's the recipe for 10-12 4" tortillas:
2 cups masa flour
1/4 tsp salt
1 1/4 - 1 3/4 cups warm water, more or less depending on the humidity in your home
In a large bowl, mix masa flour, salt, and water. Knead into a smooth dough. This is a perfect task for little hands!
The dough should be just a tiny tad sticky but not gluey. Let rest for a few minutes.
Heat up a cast-iron skillet to medium-high. Your skillet is ready when a drop of water sizzles away immediately.
Take 2 tbsp scoops of dough (about the size of a golf ball) and press into the desired shape.
We use a tortilla press lined with two sheets of parchment paper. If you don't have a press, put the dough ball on a sheet of parchment on your counter. Cover with a second sheet of parchment and then press into a tortilla with a heavy, flat-bottomed pan. Or simply pad the ball into a flat tortilla by hand.
Now you'll follow our 20-80-20 Tortilla-Toasting-Timing rule:
Toast 20 seconds, Flip and toast 80 seconds, Flip and toast 20 seconds more.
So, place the tortilla onto the skillet.
Wait 17-20 seconds on the first side until the edges just dry out a tiny bit.
Flip the tortilla over. Wait until the tortilla starts to puff up ever so slightly, around 70-80 seconds.
Then flip for the last time.
Now is the moment of truth. On this third side, the tortilla should puff up into a little pillow. This will take only 20 seconds.
Now take the tortilla onto the skillet.
Transfer the newly cooked tortilla into your bowl lined with a towel or cloth napkin and cover with another napkin so the tortilla can steam.
Shape the next tortilla and toast using the 20-80-20 Toasting Timing rule.
Place the next tortilla directly onto the previous one and cover it with the napkin again. Repeat until you have used up all the masa dough.
This recipe, of course, is on our masa flour Blisshaus label:
And voila! Homemade, authentic corn tortillas completely plastic-free in 30 minutes - simply heaven.
Bonus Tip: Cut any leftover, dried up tortillas into strips and fry them in an inch of oil to make your very own tortilla chips. Sprinkle with a little salt. You won't even need guacamole. People will eat all of them right away.
Of course, if you manage to hide them from the crowds, store your homemade tortillas in a Blisshaus jar when they have completely cooled down. They'll stay crispy for weeks.
Show us a photo of your tortillas: Tag us at #blisshaus or send us your photo to firstname.lastname@example.org.
We love to see & share how all of us are healing our planet one kitchen, one trip to the store at a time!