History Bite: Homemade Tortillas with Grandma

A space for you to explore new recipes, dishes, and foods from different times and places in history and across the globe, History Bites embrace the traditions and cultures that are rich with love and the moments that make each of us who we are.

To start off this series, author D. C. Marino asked her sweet, 102-year-old grandma to teach her the family recipe for homemade tortillas. Her grandma's been making tortillas since she was a little girl in Mexico— her mom taught her, and her grandmother taught her mom, and back and back the tradition goes for so many families, making these little tortillas even more delicious because of the love and history that created them.

You can make them, too, using this simple and beloved recipe! 

 

RECIPE FOR GRANDMA’S HOMEMADE TORTILLAS:

 

Ingredients:

2 cups of flour
1/2 cup of vegetable oil
1 1/2 cup of water (approx.)
1/4 cup of baking soda

 

Method:

1. Mix flour and baking soda together, then add the vegetable oil and water and hand mix. It'll turn from pasty to more dough-like as you mix it.

2. Once it becomes doughy, knead it for about a minute. Once this is done, wrap it in a cloth towel to let it set for a few minutes. After this, the rolling begins!

3. Pull a small piece of dough from the batch, and begin to press the sides of it flat as you rotate between your thumbs and forefingers, it'll start looking like a mushroom cap and be about the size of your palm.

4. Then lay it onto the board and roll it out, rotating it after each time you roll so that it becomes circular (it's okay if it isn't perfect because as my grandma says, "They don't come out rolling!").

5. Once this is done, you can place the tortilla on a pre-heated skillet. It won't take long for it to bake, so be sure to flip it quickly and then remove it before it burns!

My recommendation is that once you pull it off the skillet, you slather some butter on it, sprinkle it with a pinch of salt, and enjoy it right then and there. There's nothing like warm, homemade tortillas to make you feel like everything is going to be alright.