Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Homemade Tortilla Enchiladas

All put together and ready to tuck into the oven for dinner:



This batch was stuffed with some leftover shredded chicken, cooked brown rice, a (drained) can of black beans and one of corn, a can of diced green chiles and some grated sharp cheddar plus cumin, corainder, chili powder, Mexican oregano, salt and pepper. You'll also want a can or bottle of your favorite prepared enchilada sauce and some chopped fresh cilantro for garnish once you pull it out of the oven. Quick and easy, 100% from the pantry and leftovers, and the filling is just as tasty heated up by itself in a bowl as it is wrapped up and baked if you're short on time.

Anyway, as the title of the post suggests, I made the tortillas from scratch. More because I was too lazy to go to the grocery store than anything else, but it turns out flour tortillas are quick and easy and pretty much completely worth the effort and it's something I'm definitely going to continue to do. And in general, I find that I am making bread products from scratch more and more lately because I am so totally over all of the processed weirdness of 99% of supermarket breads and it seems like that and the overall quality are just getting worse and worse. So these totally win on that account, too.


The recipe I used was:
2c. flour
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
2 tsp. oil
3/4 c. warm water

Basically you just mix up the ingredients and knead for a bit until the dough smooths out, then let it rest for a while...like 30 mins. to an hour but I think you could let this go as long as works for your schedule. And generally speaking, longer resting (technically called retarding)=more flavor anyway. After that it gets divided up into eight balls, rested for a few more minutes, rolled out into thin rounds and cooked in a hot, dry cast iron skillet. That's it.

I gather that these are considered more of a tex-mex style tortilla in that they're thicker and chewier, and I liked that about them. And mine totally did NOT turn out round, but that's ok. I think getting them perfectly round takes either your Mexican grandmother, a whole lot of practice with the rolling pin or a tortilla press...none of which I have. Totally delicious nevertheless.

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Comments:
Looks lovely! Do you have any experience making soft corn tortillas? I can't have wheat and I'm curious whether corn ones can be made from home.
 
I made some tortilla's about a month ago and they turned out the same way. More like a Gordita than a thin flour tortilla. The place on the internet that I found the recipe had one for the thinner (Sonoran?) tortilla but you needed bread flour which I did not have so I made the thick ones.

I used a french rolling pin that is tapered on the ends and just used the end to roll them out and by the last few they were getting pretty round and a lot thinner.
 
Josephine--I've never made corn tortillas, mostly because I don't have ready access to masa harina, the fine ground corn flour they require. I can't imagine it's too big of a deal, however. Just a couple of ingredients, but you'd definitely need a tortilla press for those.

Hey Dougie
I seems like there are two recipe camps, one has quite a bit of lard or other solid fat, and the other just has a couple of teaspoons of oil. The ones with lard would definitely make a thinner, less chewy tortilla.
I use a French rolling pin, too, and I agree that using the end is helpful. I think with another couple of batches worth of practice, I'd do better!
 
I guess you would need a press since the batter would be thinner. I'll have to look for the masa flour when I am in Toronto. Rural Ontario is not a great area for Mexican ingredients.
 
Splatgirl,
The Aldi stores in the Twin Cities have the masa flour. It is usually on an end cap with dried beans. Looks like a 5 pound bag. My mom used to make home made tortillas in the 70s when we were growing up. She always kept the flour in a sealed storage bin and it never seemed to go bad or buggy.
 
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