Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Waffle-grid Tortilla Recipe to Avoid

Instead, make use of some tortilla and biscuit recipes that I compiled links to for ideas. My previous blog article was a recipe for making tortillas by using a waffle cone iron. It was an experiment for omitting sugar in cones and saving loads of calories. The sugarless cones did not harden or keep their moldable shapes like the sugary ones, so I decided to call them waffle-grid tortillas and use them for wraps and foldovers.

I wanted to be able to present a recipe that made use of an online recipe for flour tortillas, using my cone waffle iron as a means to cook both sides of the tortilla. The panfry method requires frying one side of a tortilla and flipping it to cook the other side.

As I researched flour tortilla recipes, I noticed a commonality of ingredients, five items: all-purpose flour, baking powder, salt, fat, and fluid. Somehow, I veered into looking up biscuit recipes, many of which had the same five ingredients. The major difference between flour tortillas and biscuits were as follows:

  • Biscuit dough—at least twice as much fat as tortilla dough
  • Tortilla dough—much more handling (kneading/rolling) than biscuit dough (minimal mixing)
  • Tortilla dough—one to two "rest" periods of about 10 to 20 minutes each, depending on recipe, but none for biscuit dough
  • Pre-cooking shapes—tortilla dough sheet, to dough balls, to flattened shapes; biscuit dough sheet, to shapes cut with a measuring cup or biscuit cutter

I followed a simple tortilla recipe for ingredients, up until flattening the dough balls. Instead of using a rolling pin or palote, I used thumbs and fingers. Instead of pan frying each tortilla, I baked it in my waffle cone appliance, pressing the clamshell down with a couple of hot pot holders. The results looked decent, although a bit thick. I even took pictures of the stages, so optimistic that waffle-grid tortillas (II) would turn out well!

What a surprise and disappointment to discover they are tough! Not one to throw out food, I've been eating some in small bites, spread with butter and lightly heated. I'm emphasizing that these tortillas were not good results! If you infer the process and try your own batch, don't be surprised that you come up with the same chewy results. If you do come up with more tender results, let me know!

Revisiting some of the recipes, biscuit recipes warned of toughness from overhandling, but the tortilla recipe instructions seemed to contradict, seeming to require dough-playing. Another thought that came to mind was compressing the dough while cooking might have contributed to the less-than-desired results, as the actual recipes indicate airy heat.

The following recipe links that I compiled call for the ingredients in common of all-purpose flour, baking powder, salt, fat, and fluid:

Flour Tortillas

Biscuits

The recipes that called for shortening or lard instead of oil required cutting the fat into the dry ingredients before mixing in the fluid. The recipe I used called for oil, which I stirred into the fluid (milk). Most of the recipes called for water for the fluid, but some called for milk. Maybe some knowledgeable cook can enlighten about using milk vs. water, aside from nutritional benefits of using milk.

All my previous articles featuring recipes were successes. This time, I wrote about a failed recipe. In failure, however, lessons learned, with curiosity for a different approach in the future, is an experience gained.

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