Taco Tuesday: Corn Tortilla Recipe
The foundation of all tacos; the support of all heavenly flavors; the symbol of top-tier foods: the corn tortilla. The tortilla can often be overlooked as an unimportant component of a taco, but that stops today. The tortilla, more especially of the corn variety, is arguably the most important part of a taco. Without it, all you have is a salad. Whether your Taco Tuesday is spent at one of Arkansas’ fantastic taco restaurants or at your home with a skillet and Pinterest, have you thought about the science behind your tortilla?
When I dream about tacos, my subconscious tends to go back to summers spent at my Aunt Estrella’s home in Texas, with hot tortillas, brisket and mounds of cheese. I tend to test the limit of how much meat and cheese a tortilla can hold, and Aunt Estrella’s tortillas always withstood the test in durability and tastiness. If you ask Aunt Estrella what her secret is for her corn tortillas, she swears by the Maseca brand of cornmeal that only requires a little bit of water.
Corn Tortilla Recipe
2 cups Maseca cornmeal
1 ½ to 2 cups of warm (almost hot) water
Mix Maseca with warm water, little by little, until a dough is formed. (This recipe makes around 16 to 18 tortillas, so be ready to chow down.)
Let rest for five minutes.
Knead dough with your fingertips. The dough will start out gritty, but becomes more workable after a few minutes of kneading.
Pinch off pieces and roll into balls the size of a plum.
Place dough between two sheets of plastic wrap and press down to form a thin circle. Using a tortilla press makes the process much easier, but feel free to work with what you have.
Heat a skillet with a bit of butter. (Cast iron skillets are great for cooking tortillas, but any will do just as fine.)
Carefully remove each tortilla from the plastic.
Letting the tortilla hang half on your hand and half on the skillet, gently lay down one tortilla at a time on the skillet.
Cook each side for around 30 seconds. The tortilla should be lightly toasted with air pockets forming.
Grab your favorite goodies to make up your taco and enjoy!