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Since moving to Mexico I have become a tortillas snob. I can’t eat tortillas form the grocery store anymore. They taste like cardboard. If they are corn tortillas can be bought from the market in town that makes them fresh daily as long as they are eaten with in a few hours of purchase and kept warm.
When it comes to flour tortillas they must be eaten hot off the grill. Other wise forget it, they aren’t even worth it. Within my first few weeks at our school I was in the kitchen learning to make flour tortillas from one of our director’s wife, Isabel (Liz). According to the ladies in my area a woman is not ready to get married until she can make perfectly round tortillas. So all you single ladies out there, start practicing! These can just as easily be made with unbleached white flour if you want to skip the soaking process or if you want a more authentic tortilla.
Soaked Whole Wheat Flour Tortillas
4 cups freshly ground whole wheat flour
2 cups warm water
2 TBS acid medium (apple cider vinegar, lemon juice or whey)
1/3 cup oil (coconut or olive)
1 tsp sea salt
1 tsp baking powder
Unbleached white flour for dusting
In a bowl combined flour, water, acid medium and oil. Stir until the flour is mixed in. cover with a cloth or plastic wrap and leave on the counter to soak for twelve to twenty four hours.
Once the soaking is complete sprinkle the salt and baking powder over the top of the dough. Gently kneed in the bowl until the salt and baking powder are mixed in.
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured (unbleached white flour) surface and kneed for about five minutes. Cover the dough ball and let it set for twenty minutes.
After twenty minutes gently pull of small ball of dough and roll in your hand until round. You should have between twelve and fifteen balls of dough. Cover and let the dough balls rest for ten minutes.
Take a little unbleached white flour and place it in a pile on the counter. Pick up your first ball of dough and lightly press it into the flour just to lightly cover both sides and flatten the tortilla ball. Roll the rolling pin once forwards and then back towards your self. Then turn the dough over and rotate 45 degrees. Continue to do this until you have a round (or nearly round) tortilla. Don’t be discouraged if your tortillas end up looking more like geometric shapes, it takes practice and they still taste just as good. Though you may have trouble getting married.
Cook the tortillas on a hot grill for a few seconds on both sides. Don’t let them get too brown or they will end up being hard when they cool off. Place each tortilla hot off the grill in a few tea towels to keep them warm.
Enjoy with some yummy meat or refried beans !