I just got done watching Northwestern beat Michigan on a buzzer beater. I am so excited for my oldest son, a graduate of Northwestern, and so bummed for my daughter, a graduate of Michigan. Do you have these kind of big problems? It is funny because they each care about their alma maters sports teams. A Northwestern fan is a lot like our recent experience of being Cub fans – lovable losers. Getting back to the post, my regular readers know that I love Mexican food and my wife and I are trying a gluten free diet. How do I reconcile this challenge of competing forces? I tried to make a Gluten Free Tortilla.
Making tortillas is just like making bread. The dough is created by mixing dry ingredients and adding the wet ingredients. The ingredients are mixed to form a dough ball. The key, like all bread, is getting the right texture, the right moisture. The dough ball needs to be wet enough to come together but not so wet that the ball can not be rolled out with a rolling pin. The same texture objective applies to the tortilla. Instead of rolling out the dough, the mini balls are pressed in the tortilla press to make the circular tortillas we are so familiar with.
Did I say these are gluten free? The use of gluten free flour does not change anything about the process of making the tortillas. I did end up with a tortilla that was a little thicker than I am used too. What is so interesting about this phenomena is that normally gluten free bread recipes aren’t as robust, big as there gluten counterparts. Do any of my readers have any suggestions for why this happened? I an not a scientist and do not know why this occurred. Who cares? These gluten free tortillas are the perfect vehicle for a Mexican dinner.
The cast of characters.
The dry ingredients, shortening added, and then the addition of the wet ingredients.
All of the ingredients formed into a dough ball, and eventually, the tortilla balls made.
The dough sitting prior to pressing, formed into a ball on the tortilla press and pressed.
The Gluten Free Totilla Plated.
Gluten Free Tortillas
A gluten free tortilla recipe that will make you forget its gluten counterpart and the perfect substitute to keep your Mexican traditions.
- 1 1/4 Cups Gluten Free Flour
- 1/2 Cup Tapioca Flour
- 1/2 Tsp Baking Powder
- 1 Tsp Xanthum Gum
- 1/2 Cup Potato Starch
- 1/8 Tsp Salt
- 2 Tbsp Vegetable Shortening
- 3/4 Cup Water
In medium bowl, whisk together gluten free flour, tapioca flour, potato starch, baking powder, xanthan gum, and salt.
Using your hands, cut in the shortening. No large pieces of shortening or lard should remain.
Add 1/2 cup cold water. Stir with a wooden spoon. Dough will be dry. Add another 1/4 cup water. Stir. Feel the dough. If it starts to hold together and feels damp, stop adding water. If the dough feels dry, add another two tablespoons water. Repeat until dough is moist but not wet.
Generously flour your countertop. Turn dough out onto counter. Flour your hands lightly with gluten free flour. Gather dough into a ball. Knead the dough until smooth. If the dough is too wet, knead additional flour into it; if the dough feels dry, knead a splash more water into it. You want the dough to be easy to work with. Pull off a little. Roll it between your palms. It should not stick or fall apart - create balls until all the dough is used.
Cover dough with plastic wrap. This prevents a skin from forming.
Heat cast iron skillet over medium heat. While skillet heats, dust the the tortilla press with gluten free flour. Place the dough ball into the press and close to flatten. Lift the press and pull out the tortilla. Repeat until all the balls have been pressed.
Increase the heat under the skillet to medium-high if the skillet isn't smoking lightly. Place the tortilla into the skillet. Cook, two to three minutes, until the tortilla is golden brown. Remove and place hot tortilla onto a plate. Cover with a clean, dry towel.
Serve and enjoy!