Easy flour tortillas

Humo[u]r is the great thing, the saving thing. The minute it crops up, all our irritations and resentments slip away and a sunny spirit takes their place.
~ Mark Twain

Occasionally, food items march through my mind unsummoned and uninvited. And, once in my mind, they simply refuse to depart until I make them (i.e. create them in the kitchen).

This morning, while getting a drink of water, my eyes fell on the tub of mole rojo paste from Jian. I thought about that meal with a big smile on my face.

Thereafter, though, thoughts of tortillas bloomed in my mind like happy wild mushrooms… no other thoughts could chase them away.

And so it was that I made tortillas today for the first time. Trusty Google led me to this recipe, and I was happy to discover that they are in fact so easy and quick to make!

While the balls of dough sat in their tea-towel-blanket-bliss, I cut onions, smashed garlic, blanched green beans, heated up black beans. I dissolved a spoonful of mole paste in chicken stock, added a few squares of dark chocolate for good measure, and tossed the sauce all over seared chicken cubes and a few prawns. I combined the cooked beans with diced onion and tomatoes. I preheated the oven to 50°C so it could keep everything warm.

The tortillas were all cooked in under five minutes, and happily emerged reasonably round and flat, given that I shaped them with my palms and fingers (we don’t have a rolling pin yet).

Still can’t adequately describe the taste of this mole rojo… smoky and elusive as ever.

Love the addition of creamy avocado and zesty lime…

Here are the beans…

And this is what Fran and I had for dinner tonight. What did you eat tonight?

Hope you all have a fantastic week ahead :-)

    Ingredients:
    1 1/2 cups flour
    3/4 tsp baking powder
    ~40g butter, at room temperature*
    2/3 cup hot water
    Method:
    Sift the flour and baking powder into a bowl, and whisk till well combined. Add in the butter and hot water, then mix the dough with your hands.
    On a lightly floured surface, knead the dough by hand for around 5 minutes. Roll the dough out into a snake-shaped log and cut the dough into 6 equal portions. Shape each piece of dough into a round ball and cover with a tea towel. Let them sit for 20 minutes (this is a great window of time to cook the rest of your dinner).
    Place a non-stick skillet over medium heat. Do not grease the pan. Flatten each ball of dough into a nice large circle, with a rolling pin if you have one – otherwise just with your palms and fingers. Cook the tortillas one at a time, 20-30 seconds on each side. Your tortillas should have little brown spots on them.
    They taste best warm. I like stacking them on an ovenproof plate and leaving them in an oven at 50°C until everything is ready, so dinner arrives at the table warm.
    Yields 6 tortillas** – enough for 2-3 people.

* If the butter is fresh from the fridge, microwave it for approximately 20 seconds so that it’s still solid but closer to room temperature.

** The sky is the limit with toppings – minced meat, grated cheese, sour cream, smoky mole, spicy salsa, guacamole… in fact, given their similarity to roti prata, I think they would taste pretty good with a spicy Malaysian curry too.

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20 responses to “Easy flour tortillas

  1. I’ll have to try these – I used to make tortillas for the kids years ago, out of my Nancy Spain cookbook, but they didn’t have any butter in them and weren’t that great!

    • Hi Anne! I saw some recipes which listed shortening/lard too, wonder how those would taste. Let me know how you get on with this recipe if you try it :-)

  2. Wow, talk about taking taco night to a whole new level. Everything looks amazing!

  3. Gosh, this looks good! I have heard of using a wine bottle as a rolling pin…haven’t ever tried, though…

  4. Wow wow wow! Mel you’ve done an amazing job!

  5. Lime and avocado are FANTASTIC together! And would you look at those tortillas! They look so fresh and authentic. Nicely done Mel!

  6. Oh, snap! I had mole on Saturday night as well. My first time, and it was just as delicious as I imagined. Impressive tortillas, – I’ll definitely try to make these at my next Mexican dinner party.

    • :-) Did you make your mole from scratch? My friend Kath and I tried making our own sometime last year too, quite different from using mole paste though. And that’s a nice idea there re a Mexican dinner party…

  7. It was a super yummy meal – thanks Mel! And those tortillas were amaaaaazing <3

  8. Hi mel,
    A question but how soft are your doughs?? mine turned out ultra sticky (more soft as it had enough butter in it) although it cooked up REALLY nice. It was so sticky that I barely kneaded them. It made a fabulous dinner along with some tandori chicken :)

    • Hmm, they were pretty soft and pliable – not sticky though! I hardly had to flour the benchtop. Perhaps add more flour to the mixture next time? (In any case, it sounds like they turned out just fine ;-))

      • hmmmmm it might be a difference in humidity and the fine-ness of the flour….. When I cook the cakes and stuff over here, it uses less flour than nz too (and good golly, the humidity is only 15%!). I probably ended up adding another 1/3 of flour or so.

      • Yes I definitely find that a recipe can turn out quite differently in different kitchens / countries – always best to test and adjust quantity as you go… or at least that’s what I do :)

  9. Holy moly! these look amazing. nice cooking from scratch!

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