Last year traveling in Guatemala we ate tortillas with nearly every meal. As a main staple people throughout the cities and villages had a special type of grill that they would set up on the side of the road to hand make and bake fresh. These weren't your flimsy little cardboard things you buy in the store. They were usually thick soft and subtly sweet. I'd buy a dozen and nibble on a few while walking back to home base, and save the others for the rest of the days meals. Dipped in soup, grilled and topped with guacamole, sliced into strips to substitute pasta, bean and veggie tacos, not to mention they served as the perfect base for local peanut butter and bananas toasties. I often find that eating with your hands instead of a fork tastes so much better and fresh tortillas are a great excuse to do just that.
I'm temporarily working in San Diego, and being back in the sun and warmth after a long winter in Minnesota has had me craving the fresh sweet taste of this ancestral staple. Lucky for me, my clients were thrilled to try them too.
To spruce them up a bit I've added turmeric and black pepper, a little plant medicine and extra flavor. I made enough to make tacos for dinner and serve as the base for breakfast the following morning. They're gluten-free, made with real food, and so fucking good.
- 1 1/4 cups organic masa (I used bob's red mill)
- 1 1/8 cup water
- 1 tsp turmeric (I used Simple Organic)
- 1 tsp black pepper
- sea salt
The recipe is simple but there are a few little tricks to perfect them.
You really just want it to come together to form a smooth dough, not too wet. Next, cover your dough and chill in the fridge for an hour. Don’t skip this. I tried without chilling, (I’m not the best at reading the WHOLE recipe before I start) and had a hard time handling them. They were falling apart before I could get them to the pan.
After the dough has been chilled, form some of the dough into a 2-3 inch sized ball and get ready to press. If you have a tortilla press AWESOME they're cheap and useful. If you're not ready to invest in one you can simple flatten them by hand or use a plastic bag to keep dough from sticking to the counter and use a plate to flatten. It might take a few times to get it right but just re-roll the dough into a ball and press again.
Preheat a cast iron pan (see my post about why its the only pan I ever use) splash little avocado oil if needed and bake for about two minutes per side. And wah-lah you've some delicious tortillas to scoop up and hold any of your favorite toppings!
Things to come in handy: