Wheat Tortillas ('wraps')

Wheat Tortillas
wheat tortillasMakes 8 tortillas

1.5 cup flour (can be half wholemeal)
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 tblsp butter or margarine
1/2 cup hot water (not boiling)

Extra flour for rolling

Put the three dry ingredients in a bowl with the butter, and rub in until the mixture resembles very fine breadcrumbs, rather as you would for making pastry or crumble. Alternatively, whizz for a short time in the food processor.

Add the water, and mix well until the mixture forms a slightly sticky ball. If it is very sticky you can add a little extra flour, but it should be quite pliable. Ensure that all the dough comes away from the sides of the bowl, and knead for about twenty seconds. Then leave it to rest for five minutes or so.

Divide the mixture by hand into eight pieces, and roll into small balls. If possible, leave them to rest again for a few minutes. Then, one at a time, roll out on a floured surface,using a well-floured rolling-pin, until they are very thin. The dough is quite stretchy, unlike pastry, and although it seems impossible at first, they will roll extremely thinly if you keep turning and rolling gently, ensuring plenty of flour.

Heat a frying pan until it is very hot - so that a drop of water forms a ball and sizzles. Then cook each tortilla for about thirty seconds on each side. They are very easy to turn over. Wait until you can see little bubbles rising before turning, and watch to make sure they do not burn. A few brown specks are not a problem.

Stack in a clean tea-towel to keep them soft enough to fill for enchiladas or other Mexican-style dishes. If you want to freeze them for later use, do so as soon as they have cooled.

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These tortillas will not be as soft and pliant as the kind you can buy in the supermarket, but are considerably less expensive. They are a bit fiddly to make, but if you have an assistant it can work well to have one person rolling while the other cooks.

However, if you are in the kitchen on your own, it's possible to stack the uncooked tortillas roughly on something like a bread-board; they will not stick, due to the extra flour used in rolling.

Note for those who do not use measuring cups: a cup of flour weighs about 100-120g, and half a cup of water is around 130ml. Since quantities are not very exact in this recipe, cup measuring works well. 

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