Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Flour Tortillas in the Flatbread Maker

Today we are having reheated Chilli con Carne from the freezer.

Rather than just throwing some rice on to accompany it, I am going to make some fresh Mexican flour tortillas. This gives a good excuse to play with my Flatbread (Tortilla/Chapathi/Roti) Maker.

Invented as a cross between a Mexican tortilla press and an electric frying pan, this sort of kitchen gadget was initially sold in America, and not really ever made for export to Europe due to a percieved lack of demand for making Mexican food in the home.

However, at some point some bright spark realised that Mexican flour tortillas and Indian chapathis are very nearly the same thing, and so tortilla makers started being made in India for sale locally as Chapathi or Roti Makers. From there they finally made their way across for sale in Europe.

Mine is a Butterfly brand from India, imported and sold through Amazon.

  • 2 cups Flour (I used chapathi flour)
  • A pinch of salt
  • 1/4 cup Lard (Though this time I actually used dripping as I didn't have enough lard in the fridge)
  • 1 cup Hot Water
Measure the flour, salt and fat into a large bowl.
Rub the fat into the flour until it looks like breadcrumbs.
Add the hot water and mix together with a knife.
When cool enough to handle, knead until smooth.
Let the dough rest for a few minutes, whilst the flatbread maker heats up.

Divide the dough into 12 pieces for small tortillas, or 8 pieces for large ones.

Roll a piece of dough in your hands into a ball, and squash into a thick oval.

Place the dough in the open flatbread maker near the hinge. Quickly close the flatbread maker and squash the dough out flat by pressing down with the large handle. Open the machine again and let the circle of dough cook for 20-30 secs or so on one side.

Turn the dough over and let cook for another 30 seconds or so on the other side.
Then close the machine to cook the tortilla from both sides at once - it will puff up with steam as it cooks in the middle. I've not got one to puff up as much as the chapathi in the demo video yet though!

Remove the tortilla from the machine once it is cooked - it should have a few golden patches on each side. It will feel a little dry on the outside, but will become soft again as it stands.
Keep warm, wrapped in a clean teatowel whilst you cook the rest.

Serve to accompany chilli, salad and sour cream.