Wednesday, April 13, 2011
When I get busy I turn on my "back to basics" mode in the kitchen. I make things that I know everyone will be happy with and that take minimal effort. Time and again it means food that I grew up with. Corn tortillas were a staple. In fact, they were a "rite of cooking passage" in my home for all of us kids. Simple cheese quesadillas were one of the first "meals" we all learned how to make. Pretty early on, too. They were the meal of choice for breakfasts on the run and after school snacks. I vividly remember wrapping piping hot ones in a paper towel and dashing to catch the street car (J Church) to middle school.
Fast forward to the present and I can't get a decent tortilla (the fresh masa kinds) anywhere close by, but we certainly still eat lots of them. Now that my co-op sells organic corn masa... we often make them ourselves.
Have you ever made a corn tortilla? They're a wonderful cooking project to invite children to join in, because they involve rolling pins or even better... a tortilladora.
We brought ours from California and for many years it was used primarily for playdough (highly recommended dough tool for little ones!). These days it has returned to the kitchen, and my kids love taking turns pressing masa balls.
They are on the thick side (and lovingly imperfect) so we don't fold them over. Instead we make them small and easy to hold for (open faced and lightly fried) tostadas.
If I had to name a flavor that reminded me most of childhood- corn tortillas would be a the top of the list. What would be at the top of yours?