23 March 2011

Who Needs Taco Bell?

Tonight I made homemade tortillas to go along with our soft taco, Spanish rice dinner. This is a fairly easy recipe, but I find that anything that requires rolling makes it slightly work intensive, so be prepared. Luckily, while I was rolling, Heidi and Piper were enjoying a rousing game of 'hide and seek' in the cupboard beneath the butcher block I was working on.

Here is the original recipe: Flour Tortillas

Because there is no way I would ever need 24 tortillas, unless I was having a tortilla party, I cut the recipe in half and used the following:

2 cups flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
1 tblsp shortening
3/4 cup water

Yes, despite the warning she gives not to use vegetable oil or shortening in place of lard, I chose to use the shortening because A. it was what I had and B. I wouldn't be caught dead with a block of lard, although I have heard it's not as bad as we're made to believe it is.

Now, I'm not sure if I overfilled my measuring cup and didn't notice, but when I dumped the last remains of the water into the mixture, it became a sticky, soppy mess. I had to add A LOT more flour to get it to form into dough again and then still more when I was rolling the tortillas. So I would tell you just to add the water a bit at a time until you get a nice doughy consistency. (On a side note, once you notice the ingredients that go into making these perfectly adequate tortillas, wonder why most store-bought brands contain a paragraph of ingredients.)

What did I stuff these tortillas with, you ask? Well, I'll tell you. First I sauteed an onion and a few cloves of garlic along with chopped red, orange and yellow pepper. Then I added a can of corn and a can of black beans. You probably don't want to drain all of the liquid from one of the cans just so you can keep your mixture moist (I made that mistake this time and had to add some water). Then I seasoned with onion powder, garlic powder, Adobo and cumin. I brought it up to a boil and then let it sit on low until I was done with those stinkin' tortillas. (They gave me a lot of trouble because of the excessive water. You can have a much better experience!) I served this with Near East's Spanish Rice Pilaf (because it was on sale!) and some salsa on top. Both Heidi and Piper ate their weight in rice.

Steve altered the recipe further buy mixing the rice and beans with some Mexican blend of cheese and serving it with some chicken that he made. The possibilities are endless!


  1. Those look fantastic! I've tried my hand at tortillas, but never had a result quite that beautiful. I have ended up with a sticky mess before, too - maybe it has to do with humidity in the air?

  2. That could be it! I didn't know what to do so that's why I just kept adding flour haha. They were still terribly sticky when I tried to roll them, so even then I was flour-boarding them :)

  3. I've never tried to make my own! I wonder if I can use soy free dairy free earth balance buttery spread instead? It's much more solid than margarine. Son is allergic to dairy and soy and there is soy in vegetable shortening.

  4. You could always use lard! Haha :)
    Try it out! I didn't do what the recipe said and they were still edible :). It can't hurt to try and if they dont come out, oh well :). I know you can use veg oil in place of the shortening so another oil might work too.