Northern Style Flour Tortillas
INGREDIENTS - makes 24 to 30 tortillas
4 cups all purpose flour (avoid flours with high protein content, anything under 13%)
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
2/3 cup vegetable shortening, lard, or room temperature butter
1 3/4 cup hot water
- Mix dry ingredients. Combine flour, salt, and baking powder in a large bowl.
- Add shortening. Add vegetable shortening (or whatever fat you are using) and rub it in with your fingers. It should resemble sand with a few pea-sized pieces of fat.
- Knead. Add water and mix to form a wet dough. It will be sticky. Turn out onto a unfloured work surface and knead for 5 minutes. It will be really sticky at first but eventually will form a smooth dough. Use a bench scraper to scrape the dough off the counter as you go if necessary.
- Let rest. Grease a large bowl place the dough inside and turn to coat in the oil. Cover with plastic wrap and let rest 20 minutes.
- Divide the dough. Pinch off a small piece of dough (a digital scale is really handy for this). The size of the piece will depend on how large your comal or skillet you will be cooking the tortillas on is (a little bigger than a golf ball) which give us 8-inch tortillas. Roll into smooth balls and place on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Cover with a clean kitchen cloth.
- Heat the pan. Place a comal or other nonstick skillet over medium heat and let warm at least 3 minutes before you cook any tortillas on it.
- Roll the tortillas. Place a ball of dough on a lightly floured counter and flour a rolling pin. Roll each ball into a very thin circle. You should be able to see your hand through it. The thinner the better.
- Cook. As you roll place each tortilla on the hot, dry skillet and cook undisturbed until toasted and bubbles cover the surface, about 1 minute. Flip and cook another minute on the other side. Keep warm in a clean towel and repeat with remaining dough.