Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Surf Burritos

And you thought we were done talking about Mexican food.

This addiction is getting a little crazy this month, but we only have one more Mexican dinner planned and then I think we'll be good for a while. Besides, surf burritos (aka fish burritos) are more like California food, right? And when they're made with homemade flour tortillas, well, there's really nothing more to say than, YUM.

We made these burritos based on Surf Taco's Surf Burrito, but I have to say, these ones were even better than the restaurant version. I attribute it to two things.

1. Matt's homemade Corona-cayenne beer batter. I know. Don't judge.

2. My homemade flour tortillas.

Corn tortillas are great for tacos, but wheat flour tortillas are best for burritos. Look at those little brown dough bubbles!

I've been making these tortillas probably since I was 12 years old. My mom's good friend, Holly grew up in New Mexico and used to make them for us when we were growing up. We ate them for dinner at least once a week, stuffed with her home cooked pinto beans (omg) and sour cream, and a lot of times we'd have them for snacks too. She'd heat up leftover tortillas and top them with melted butter and a drizzle of honey, and us kids would roll them up and tote them outside to eat them on the grass. Ah, memories. I wish I could eat a honey butter tortilla now and not think twice about it.

Anyway, these tortillas could not be easier to make. They have only 3 ingredients, and come together in about 20 minutes. I made mine on a weeknight, so they have to be fast! I promise, these will blow your grocery store tortillas away.

All you do is mix flour, shortening (I used butter this time since I didn't have shortening) and salt together,  and add water. If you like your tortillas fluffy, you can also add a teaspoon of baking powder. I do this if I'm using the tortillas for tostadas or something where I want the tortilla to have more volume, but I find that I like them thinner for burritos since they fold easier.

Then divide the dough into balls.

Then roll them out with some flour on the board, using a standard rolling pin. They should be quite thin and about 5-6 inches in diameter.

Then cook them for a couple minutes on each side in a dry pan, until they are opaque and slightly brown. Most of the time I use a griddle so I can cook multiple tortillas at once, but this time I used a cast iron skillet since I didn't feel like cleaning a whole griddle. Any kind of nonstick pan will also work.

And voila! Warm, delicious, doughy tortillas ready to go.

You can of course stuff your tortillas with anything you like, but to make our surf burritos, we made a little bed of cilantro-lime rice, sauteed red peppers, sliced avocado and shredded cabbage, and then topped it with a few pieces of beer battered cod.

So good!

Traditional Flour Tortillas

Makes 6 tortillas, can be easily multiplied 
Adapted from Holly's tortillas

2 cups flour
3 Tbsp. softened butter
1 tsp. salt
1/2 cup hot water (plus more if needed)

Combine flour, salt and butter, and mix with fingers or fork until dough is crumbly. Add water 1/4 cup at a time, until dough comes together in a ball. If you add too much water and the dough becomes sticky, just add a little more flour.

Divide the dough into six even balls. Roll them out on a floured board until think and about 5-6 inches in diameter. Cook over medium heat on a dry pan for 2-3 minutes on each side, until opaque and slightly golden brown.

Cover warm tortillas with a kitchen towel until ready to serve.

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