Monday, August 24, 2009

Tortillas, Fajitas and Rainbows (1 of 2)

I'm back!

Actually, I've been back for a few days (changed my allergy meds) but I've been lazy about blogging.

Yesterday we had a perfect day, hanging out at the ranch, reading, being lazy, in awe of how very lucky we are with this life style.

Then we were invited to the house for cooking lessons. Victor was going to make fajitas and Charmaine was going to teach me to make tortillas, yum!

Get ready, here's today's lesson. First, the ingredients.

4 cups flour
2 teaspoons salt
2 heaping teaspoons baking powder
4 tablespoons Crisco (more on this later)
1 to 1 1/2 cups warm to hot water

Here we go!

Here's Charmaine,
mixing the flour, salt and baking powder,
to which she adds
what she calls
four heaping tablespoons of Crisco.
is Charmaine's idea
of a heaping tablespoon.
As you can tell,
she believes in measuring precisely.
She uses her hands
to mix the Crisco into the flour.
When done, it should look like this,
nice and mealy.Then she adds the water.
Don't be squeamish,
just jump right in there with your handsUntil it hangs together
in a nice ballThrow it out on the counter
and knead it a bit
to make sure all the ingredients
are thoroughly incorporated.Then start making balls.
Charmaine seems to know the size
just by feel.
I would call it somewhere
between a ping pong ball
and a tennis ballMake up all the dough
and put it in a bowl to rise for a bit
The stove top is a great place
to rise the dough.
After fifteen or twenty minutes,
the dough should have risen a bit.
It will be nice and soft.
Flour both sides
and squash down to form a circle.
The rounder the ball and circle,
the rounder your tortilla will be.

At least that's the theory.

Notice the very cool rolling pin.
If she's not careful,
it may find its' way into my motorhome

Charmaine did the first batch,
then showed me how to do it.
Hers are on the right.

Sure that given a bit of time,
I would get the hang of it
she left me to finish the batch.

making round tortillas
sounds a LOT easier than it is.
Or maybe I'm just tortilla challenged . . .But they all cook just fine,
in a nice hot cast iron pan.And look at this!
Tons of tortillas,
all ready for the fajitas
that are cooking outside.
But you know what? This was such a long post that I had to do this entry in two parts, so make sure to click here to see the rest of the story.