Saturday, August 12, 2023

No substitution for fresh tortillas


I am willing to accept that there is no substitution for fresh tortillas.

I just ate five of them, somewhat crudely made, taco'd up with some cheese and highly spiced ground pork, squash, and onion. I made them myself with some fancy nixtamalized corn and a marginally workable tortilla press that I bought on vacation last week. The tortillas were...


Light. Delicate. Strong. Tasty. 


Wait, what?



There is also no substitution for not making fresh tortillas.

They are fussy, even infuriatingly so. The sticky dough I can live with as I get the hang of it, and learn to form it into balls. But one has to line both sides of the tortilla press with thin plastic each time one uses it. Then, after pressing, one has to peel the thin, insanely delicate dough off the plastic into a hot skillet without melting the plastic onto the pan or clumping up the tortilla, which must come off the plastic perfectly because there is no way to flatten or straighten or adjust the nascent tortilla in any way once it's free.

Sometimes I was sort of able to do this.

Not as often as I would imagine a Mexican Abuela would.

Not even close.

I found it all messy, labor intensive, frustrating, and delicious.

Wait, delicious?

Yes, I'm not going to come onto the beautiful, shiny, happy Internet and complain about making tortillas!

I don't regret it for a second!

But I'm pretty sure I hated it and will never do it again.

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