Confession: I’m not a gluten avoider. Like, in Any. Way. I think homemade bread is one of the most delicious things in the world, and luckily no one in our house has a gluten intolerance because in our pandemic seclusion we are baking a LOT of bread.
I find baking bread to be very meditative and stress relieving, but it is also money-saving and trips-to-the-store-saving. You can avoid unnecessary and unhealthy added sugar (it is a popular misconception that bread needs added sugar to rise) and all those horrible things Big Food loves to add: trans fats, mold inhibitors, colorings and emulsifiers. The amazing thing about bread is that you really only need a handful of simple ingredients, and time.
Of course yet another huge bonus is that making your own bread also serves to eliminate lots of wasteful packaging, much of which is bound for the landfill (I’m looking at YOU, cellophane windows).
In my last post I included a favorite sandwich bread recipe … shortly after that I made these flour tortillas. It makes a big bunch up all at once- like 30 or so- good for anything you can think of: burritos, quesadillas, wraps, etc. They definitely take time, but right now that’s something many of us have in abundance. Give these a try and let me know how they turn out.
In a large bowl whisk together:
- 6 cups flour
- 1 Tbsp salt
- 1 Tbsp baking powder
- 1 cup of bacon fat OR lard OR room temperature butter
Use a pastry cutter or your hands to combine thoroughly.
Add 2 1/4 cups very hot water and combine with hands again.
Knead for 3 minutes.
Let sit 15-20 minutes.
Then pull off small, golf-ball amounts of dough and roll flat with a rolling pin until very, very thin. Kate Moss thin. You will almost be able to see through them. Heat a cast iron pan until very hot (NO need to add oil or butter) and fry until both sides bubble a little and have small brown spots.
If possible, it’s easiest to have one person rolling and another frying. Ilsa and I like to tag team on these jobs. She has become an EXPERT fryer.
As you make them, place them on a plate wrapped in a clean dishtowel to keep them from drying out. I like to store them in our breadbox this way, but if you don’t think you’ll eat them all up in a few days you can freeze some for later.
NOTE: You do not use a tortilla press for these flour tortillas; a press is useful for corn tortillas.
My husband Steve’s favorite thing to use these for is something he made up: he sprinkles a tortilla with olive oil, Parmesan, chopped garlic and rosemary and toasts in the toaster oven to make these lovely little… what? I don’t know what to call them except Steve’s Happy Little Tortillas, and they are delicious.