My mom has been making flour tortillas as long as I can remember and I have been fortunate enough to consider it a norm to wake up on an ordinary weekday morning to find a stack of warm floury tortillas wrapped in an old dish towel waiting for me on the kitchen counter. My siblings and I would fight for the first one to come hot off the cast iron griddle and smother it with a stick of butter with the wrapper hastily torn back in a manner much like coloring with an old crayon. This kind of upbringing has made it nearly impossible for me to enjoy even the best store bought tortillas – not to mention that my mother just might consider it an insult if I did.
Over the years I’ve played with different variations of her tortillas – steeping different spices in the water, adding herbs and whatnot, and this, simple as it is, may be my favorite. The sprouted wheat adds a sweet nuttiness and hardiness that I love and yet they are still soft enough to wrap around, well…anything. And there is just something I love about working with actual sprouted wheat berries and not just buying a bag of sprouted flour from the store. The process of sprouting reminds me of catching bugs when I was a kid and fills me with that same fascination as I watch them grow and change in the jar.
These really are great however you eat them – hot off the grill with some butter and honey, wrapped around a fried egg and an avocado in the morning, or filled with some grilled meat and street taco style toppings. Enjoy – and don’t tell my mom I told you how to make them!
Sprouted Wheat Tortillas
- 4 cups wheat flour
- 2 cups sprouted wheat berries (crushed or processed in a food processor)
- 3/4 cup butter, olive oil or coconut oil
- About 2 cups very warm water (don’t use it all unless you need it!)
- 1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt
- In a bowl combine flour, wheat berries, and salt. Using your fingers, work the fat into the flour by tossing the flour over it and then rubbing between your fingers until the whole things looks like a coarse meal.
- Pour water over flour mixture, a little at a time, mixing with a fork as you go (you can use your hands but the water may be too hot). Before adding all of the water, test the mixture by squeezing a ball in your hands, if it sticks together then don’t add more water. If the mixture crumbles add more water. If it is too sticky don’t panic just add more flour.
- Turn the dough onto a board or clean countertop and knead until it is a smooth, elastic ball of dough. Cut the ball into as many small (about golf ball sized) pieces as you can get. Roll them into little balls and flatten slightly with the palm of your hand. Cover with a wet kitchen towel and let the dough rest for about half an hour (this step is very important or else they will frustratingly spring back to their original shape each time you roll them out) .
- Using a rolling pin, roll each ball into a circular shape (or as close as you get). I prefer thin tortillas – you can roll them out thicker although my mother may scold you for it. You can drape the rolled out tortillas over the edge of your countertop while your griddle gets hot, but don’t let them dry out.
- Heat a cast iron skillet or griddle over high heat (please don’t use non-stick). Cook the tortillas about a minute on the first side and about 30 seconds on the second, not too long or they will get crispy. Wrap the hot tortillas in a towel while you cook the others. Be sure to eat one off the griddle with a little butter as a reward for your hard work.