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Recipe for :

Flour Tortillas

This recipe is from the SodaMail Recipes in Time! newsletter which is written by Chele who also has her own website, Chele's Treasures <click here>

Chele is a single mother of three young boys who manages to find the time to run her own desktop publishing and personalisation service from her home and also writes the popular SodaMail newsletter Recipes in Time! three days a week.

The newsletter is really interesting as not only do you get the recipe but you also learn about the food itself as in this sample recipe. This is one of the internet's better newsletters and if you are interested in your food you should subscribe.

Chele's Fascination with Flour Tortillas

I grew up in a small town in southwest Texas, about 90 miles from Mexico. My family was very familiar with "Tex-Mex" and local Mexican cuisine. In fact, besides our Sonic, Dairy Queen, Pizza Hut and Local Steak House, all other dining establishments were Mexican! My favorite reason to eat at these restaurants was for the fresh tortillas.

Local women of the Mexican heritage made fresh tortillas for their families on a regular basis. They taught their daughters the fine art of making perfect tortillas. Indeed, the tortilla was a family food with a bond. I was always a bit jealous, as our family food was potato salad and the experience wasn't quite the same! My family tortilla bonding would happen only when my father would bring home fresh tortillas from friends because more than their family could eat were prepared!

Experiment tonight making your own flour tortillas for a little fun with the children and a taste that cannot compete with store bought tortillas. You may start your own family bond with a simple, versatile food!


3 cups of white all purpose flour
1/2 tsp of salt
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup of lard or vegtable shortening
1 cup of hot water

  • Mix the flour and salt.
  • Mix in the lard by hand until the mixture resembles small peas.
  • Add the water slowly until you have a soft elastic ball. You may need to add a little more or less water, but do it slowly. You may not really need as much water as you think you do.
  • Knead until smooth.
  • Cover with a damp towel and then let rest 15 minutes.
  • Make about 7 - 9 equal size balls.
  • Flatten and roll each ball into a flat round disk.
  • Cook on a very hot cast iron skillet. No oil is necessary.
  • Flip when bottom side is golden, the top should be bubbling slightly when ready. Use a spatula to lift the edge and check for doneness before flipping completely.
  • Keep the cooked tortillas warm by covering with a damp towel while you continue to cook.

Tips for Cooking Tortillas

  • Practice making tortillas before you make them for guests. Its not difficult, but it does take a few times before you get the "feel" for the dough.
  • Only flip once. For some reason, they do not taste good at all if flipped several times during cooking.
  • You may roll your tortilla to about 1/4 inch thickness. If they are any thicker than that, the outside burns before the inside cooks. Thin tortillas are used in fajitas and similar dishes. Thicker tortillas are common in soups and other dishes where they will be soaked.
  • Some people find it easier and neater to put the dough ball in between two sheets of wax paper when rolling out the tortilla. Another alternative is to put it in a small plastic bag and then flatten it out.

Makes 7 - 9