December 6, 2010

Flour Tortillas and Chicken Chimichungas

I like to buy tortillas from Whole Foods. Here's the list of ingredients for their whole wheat tortillas: flour, water, oil, salt, baking powder. However, the other day I was at the regular grocery store and needed some tortillas. Every single package of tortillas I picked up had a list of ingredients that was way too long. I got mad.

So, instead, I tried making my own flour tortillas. I've done it before, but I don't remember having much success. I found this recipe online (of course) and loved that it didn't require lard, and, in fact, almost matches exactly the ingredients found in the Whole Foods tortillas. This recipe worked out quite well. Warning: warm, freshly made tortillas may disappear faster than you can use them in your intended recipe.

Homemade Flour Tortillas
from Alexandra's Kitchen

Makes about 10 small tortillas or 6 large (burrito size) tortillas

2 cups unbleached, all-purpose flour (or sub one cup with whole wheat flour)
1 tsp. table salt (not kosher)
1/4 t. baking powder
1/4 c. unsalted butter
2/3 cup warm water
Whisk flour, baking powder and salt together in a medium bowl. Cut the butter into the flour until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.

Stir in warm water with a fork until a shaggy dough forms.

Turn out onto a floured surface and knead 3-4 minutes until smooth, soft, and not sticky, adding more flour if necessary.

Cut the dough into 2-oz. pieces for taco-sized tortillas or 3-oz pieces for burrito-sized tortillas. Shape pieces into a ball. Cover with a very light kitchen towel or plastic wrap. Be careful that your room isn’t too hot. Let the dough rest 30 minutes and up to two hours.

On a lightly floured work surface, roll out each ball to about 9 to 10 inches (taco) or 11 to 12 inches (burrito) in diameter, or until you can see the counter start to come through.

Heat a 12 inch non-stick or cast-iron pan (do not add any oil) on medium-high. Lay the tortilla in the pan and cook until it puffs and little brown spots on the underside appear. Turn with tongs and cook. Each tortilla takes about 45 seconds. Stack tortillas on a plate covered with a towel to keep them pliable.

Now what did I need these flour tortillas for? My favorite meal growing up (or at least the meal I'd always request on my birthday): chicken chimichungas.

These chimichungas are baked, not fried, and turn golden brown and crispy. They are perfect for using up leftover chicken.

Chicken Chimichungas
from my mother

2 ½ c. shredded cooked chicken
1 c. salsa
¾ tsp. cumin
¾- 1 tsp. salt
¼ c. melted butter
1 c. shredded Monterey Jack cheese
1/3 c. green onions
½ tsp. crushed oregano leaves
8 flour tortillas

Simmer the chicken, salsa, cumin, salt, and onions, and oregano leaves for 5 minutes. Brush one side of each of the tortillas with the melted butter. Spoon ¼ c. chicken mixture and some cheese onto unbuttered side of tortilla. Roll up and place in 9x13 pan. Bake at 475˚ for 13 minutes or until golden brown.

1 comment:

Danielle said...

Have you ever tried these with salsa verde? They are super amazing!