Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Chipotle Tortillas

I made homemade tortillas for the first time, recently.  Thanks to Mely's Mexico In My Kitchen and her excellent tutorial on making tortillas, they came out perfectly!  We've been making them often since then.

Store bought corn tortillas are convenient but there is no comparison to home made ones.  Home made tortillas have a softer but sturdier texture and a more pronounced flavor.   That got me to thinking (uh oh, do you smell smoke?) - could I push that flavor even further?

Yep!  I added chipotle to the tortilla dough and the end result was a mildly spicy tortilla.  When served  all together, you could still pick up the flavor from the tortilla but just as a supporting flavor, it wasn't overpowering.

Chipotle Tortillas

Cook Time: 30 min

Ingredients (16 tortillas)
  • 2 cups hasa marina flour
  • 1 Knorr chipotle mini-cube
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1 1/4 cup warm water
  1. Sift the flour, salt and finely crushed chipotle cube together. Tip: The chipotle cubes crush easily in your finger tips but may leave a few bigger pieces. Crush it into a sieve and the press the bigger pieces through.
  2. Add the water and mix until it forms a ball of dough. They say you might have to add additional water and I did, probably another quarter cup, 1 tablespoon at a time until I got the dough consistency.
  3. Divide the dough into 16 equal portions and work each into a ball, they should be about ping pong ball sized. Keep them covered with a damp cloth while you work or they will dry out.
  4. Cut the sides of a Glad (tm) zip top bag so you can open it up. Place it on a tortilla press. Place one of the balls on the bag/press and fold the bag over it. Press it flat then carefully peel the tortilla off.
  5. Place tortilla in a hot skillet with a little oil for 60 seconds each side.
  6. Remove and keep warm in a tortilla warmer. Repeat for remaining balls.
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Sorry for the lack of "in process" pictures.  I was a one man show and was having to work quickly here.

I know someone is going to ask about the Knorr Chipotle Mini-cubes because my sister had a hard time finding them in Florida.  I find ours at Krogers where the cans of chipotle are in the Latino section of international foods.  You can also find them in some Walmarts.  One cube is the equivalent of one chipotle.  I like them because they provide more flavor than heat, they are easy to use, and convenient to keep on hand. 

I still use regular chipotle too, it just depends on what I'm making.  Obviously, you couldn't substitute regular canned chipotle easily in this dish unless you pulverized it.  You could try adding dried ground chipotle but take it easy, that is usually hotter to me.

I also found my Imusa tortilla press and tortilla holder at Kroger.  

If you can't find one locally, check out Imusa's site for online retailers, I know target carries the cast iron press for under $25.  Mely's blog post shows alternative ways to press them out but I find the tortilla press makes it super easy.  I'd be lying if I said I didn't also find it fun to use like one of those Playdoh Fun Factory toys from my childhood.  

Not just a pretty face.  This warmer does a fantastic job keeping tortillas ready to eat.

I picked up the warmer just because it was there and I thought it would only be a "cutesy" thing but it turns out to be very functional.  It kept the tortillas warm and tender beyond the length of preparation and the meal, much more so than just wrapping in tea towels would have done.  I recommend picking one of these warmers up if you're going to make fresh tortillas, it's worth the few bucks.

[Standard Disclosure]  I received no compensation for this post.  I was offered free product from Imusa a few months back but didn't take them up on their offer.  I bought it on my own instead and paid full price.