July 12, 2008

One of my favorite, though moderately time-consuming, things to make is homemade flour tortillas. Oh. My. Gosh. Store-bought just can not compare to them! My favorite way to eat them is warm right out of the pan, smeared with salty butter. It runs down my arms, but I don't care, I just eat it over the sink! Below is my favorite recipe, courtesy of The Hillbilly Housewife (I love the recipes on the site, cheap and nutritious!

Flour Tortillas

  • 4 cups flour (white or whole wheat or half and half)
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder (not traditional, so it's optional, though I'd put it in unless you're out)
  • 1/3 C shortening
  • 1 to 1 1/4 C cold water
Combine flour, salt, and baking powder in a large bowl. Cut in the shortening. When the flour is crumbly, add in the water and mix with a fork until it begins to form a ball. Knead it 20ish times on a lightly floured surface and then let it rest for at least 10 minutes (or up to 2 hours). Now, take your dough and form it into 12 equal sized balls. Roll the balls in flour (they just need to be lightly coated). Go ahead and get your pan heating, you want a medium-high heat (I use a cast iron skillet) Now to rolling! I like to roll them between to floured sheets of wax paper. It takes practice to get them to nice round shapes, so don't worry if they look odd, they'll still taste yummy! Roll it out till it's about 6-8 inches in diameter. You don't want it too thin or it will tear. I gently peel back the top sheet of wax paper and it usually comes right off. Just be slow so that if it's stuck you don't mutilate it. Now just stick it in the pan for approximately 30 seconds on each side (you want some little brown spots on it). I keep them wrapped in aluminum foil as I cook, it keeps them warm and it also makes them flexible (they'll be a bit stiff when they come out of the pan).

I like to make my own refried beans, too.

Refried Beans

  • 1/2 pound of cooked pinto beans (more if you have a very large family, but 1/2 pounds serves 2 adults and 2 children in our home with plenty left over)
  • Fat of some kind (I prefer butter, lard is traditional)
  • garlic salt
  • salt
I like to do mine in the food processor, but you can mash them by hand for chunkier beans. So put them in the food processor, and if they're nice and hot still, go ahead and the fat (a TBSP of butter is what I use). I add in garlic powder and salt to taste and a couple TBSP of water and process till they're nice and smooth, but make them whatever consistency you want. Put them in a pot and heat them over medium heat (add the fat here if you were starting from cold beans). When they're nice and thick and hot they're done!

Serve them on the homemade tortillas with some thinly sliced onions fried in butter (this is what we had for dinner last night, if you're wondering!)

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