Before reading Make the Bread, Buy the Butter, it never occurred to me that I might make my own flour tortillas. Doesn’t it require extra tools? Wouldn’t it take a lot of time?
No! It doesn’t!
So, not only do I get to cross “tortillas” off my master pantry list, making one less thing I have to shop for (making tortillas doesn’t require any additional ingredients not on the pantry list), but I also can make 100% whole wheat tortillas for a fraction of the price of cheap white tortillas. Added nutrition, fresh and delicious tortillas, at a cheaper cost. Yes, it requires more effort, time, and preparation, but it’s not onerous at all.
In Make the Bread, Buy the Butter, Jennifer Reece gives a recipe and instructions for typical white flour tortillas. Below is my simplified, modified whole-wheat version.
Homemade Whole Wheat Tortilla Recipe
Makes 12-16 tortillas
- Into a medium mixing bowl, measure 3 scant cups whole wheat flour with a teaspoon of salt.
- Drizzle 1/3 cup oil, melted butter, tallow, or lard (basically, your liquid fat of choice) into the flour and whisk (or mix with your hands) under the mixture is crumbly.
- Add 3/4-1 cup water and mix until it forms a workable dough.
Let the dough rest for 10 minutes, then divide into golf-ball-sized balls. With a rolling pin, roll them out. Roll them about the thickness of a wheat thin cracker, not paper-thin. If you roll them too thin then they quickly overcook and become crunchy, losing their pliability.
I don’t worry about them being perfect circles, either. Think rustic. Thick handmade. Authentic. Not perfect.
Heat an ungreased skillet or griddle until very hot. Place tortillas (as many as fit at a time) onto the hot cooking surface and cook for 30-60 seconds and then flip. Cook the other side 30-60 seconds then flip them. Keep them wrapped in a dry flour-sack towel or a paper bag and eat very soon.
As Jennifer Reece writes:
These do not keep well, probably because they do not contain 14 ingredients, most of them unpronounceable, so eat them as soon as possible.
Besides that, they taste absolutely delicious. Try melting a bit of butter or cheese onto a fresh tortilla and see if you’ll ever think of store-bought tortillas in quite the same light again.