Learn About Tortillas

Author: Chef Toby

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What are tortillas?

Tortillas are a type of flatbread that is popular in Latin American cuisine. They are made by making dough with water, grains, and fats, and pressing with an iron press to make it thin. The tortillas are then cooked on a flat skillet. 

There are two types of tortillas, corn and flour tortillas. 

Corn tortillas are made with corn that has been removed from the hull, ground, and combined with water. Flour tortillas are made with all-purpose wheat flour, water, and fat, like lard or vegetable shortening. 

Sydney Making Enchiladas
Chef Sydney making green enchiladas using corn tortillas and green tomatillo salsa (salsa verde.)

What do tortillas taste like?

Corn tortillas have an earthy corn flavor. Flour tortillas have a bread-like flavor, with a hearty chew. 

How do you use tortillas?

Tortillas are most commonly used to eat alongside other foods. Tortillas are commonly used to wrap meats and braises in tacos and enchiladas. Corn tortillas are often deep-fried into tortilla chips, which are a common appetizer at most Mexican restaurants, served with salsa and guacamole. The chips can also be used in chilaquiles, a traditional Mexican breakfast consisting of fried tortilla, salsa, and eggs. You can also use tortillas to help thicken soups. 

Where do you buy tortillas?

You can buy tortillas in most grocery stores, in or near the bread aisle. You can also buy tortilla chips that are already fried sold near other chips and snacks.

How do you store tortillas?

Tortillas should be stored in the refrigerator to increase their shelf life and can stay fresh up to two weeks after opening. 

Fun fact about Tortillas

Tortillas are thought to have been invented in Mexico thousands of years ago in 10,000 B.C.E., when corn was first domesticated in the region. Flour tortillas were later created when Spain brought wheat flour to the Americas in the 16th century. 

Did you know?

The word tortilla comes from the Spanish word “torta” which means “round cake”.

Our Recipes Using Tortillas

Rolled Chicken Tacos

Rolled Chicken Tacos (Taquitos)

Cheese Enchiladas With Salsa Verde (Green Sauce)

Cheese Enchiladas with Green Sauce

Chilaquiles

For our authentic chilaquiles recipe, we use tortillas to make the chips.

Authentic Chilaquiles
Authentic Chilaquiles

Other Recipes Using Tortillas 

Carne Asada Tacos 

For this classic taco recipe, start by taking finely diced beef and adding it to a skillet with oil. To the meat, add thinly sliced onion and season with a pinch of salt and pepper. Once fully cooked and browned, remove from the heat and chop it up finely on a cutting board and set aside. Heat tortillas on a skillet for 2 minutes or until soft. Build the taco by adding the chopped meat, lime juice, diced onion, chopped cilantro, and your favorite salsa (we really love our Avocado salsa for beef tacos!)


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