Most days tortillas are one of the few items I give myself permission to buy pre-made, but some days call for homemade, for the flavor and slight imperfections of made from scratch.
It is a truth universally acknowledged that a perfectly round tortilla lacks the flavor found in a tortilla just slightly off center.
Sure, store bought flour tortillas stay soft longer, but I’ve yet to find a packaged tortilla as flaky and tasty as this homemade bacon fat tortilla.
The perfect delivery device for a breakfast taco or quesadilla. Use them to scoop up chili. I won’t tell if you opt for the no sides needed, straight to the mouth, delivery method.
Random notes and asides: Homemade Bacon Fat Flour Tortillas
For an even richer tortilla- substitute warm milk or buttermilk for the water.
For an even more flavorful tortilla- add a tablespoon or two of fresh finely diced chives or cilantro
Saving and Storing Bacon Fat
rendering bacon fat:
- I bake my bacon. If you want to render as much fat as possible from your bacon go low and slow. Most recipes call for ten to twenty minutes at 400F. Since Sunday is our usual bacon day, a day where distractions and delays abound, I like to lower the temp to 350 F and give it a bit more time. We line a baking sheet or a cast iron pan with parchment paper, let it go until I can smell the bacon when I’m upstairs reading, then turn the oven off and wait for the waffles to be made.
- Low and slow renders more fat with less burned bits. Lining the pan with parchment makes for an easy pour and cleanup
storing bacon fat:
- once the bacon fat has cooled enough to not burn but is still liquid- simply strain it through a fine sieve or coffee filter into a canning jar or metal container (nothing melty!). I use a metal bowl because I store the bacon fat in the freezer and I don’t want to worry about cracking.
- store filtered bacon fat in the fridge for up to six months or in the freezer for nine months to a year
- if you use it often, or in spurts, keep two containers- one in the fridge and one in the freezer and rotate. you can store bacon fat on the counter but it’ll go rancid faster.
flavorful and tender flour tortillas made with rendered bacon fat
- 3 cups all purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon diamond kosher salt or to taste, this depends on how salty your bacon fat is
- 1/3 cup bacon fat at refrigerator temperature
- 1 cup or perhaps just a little bit more warm wat
- in a large bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt
- using your hands or a pastry cutter add the bacon fat and cut into the flour mixture until slightly crumbly and throughly integrated
- add the warm water and knead until smooth and elastic (if you grow tired of kneading, cover the dough with plastic wrap and let rest for ten or fifteen minutes before continuing)
- divide the dough into 16 roughly equal sized balls, cover with plastic wrap for another twenty minutes (if counter space is at a premium I put the balls back into the mixing bowl and cover them there, the dough is dry enough that sticking rarely occurs)
- on a lightly floured surface roll out the balls into 6”-8” rounds. keep the balls and rolled out tortillas covered as you work. lightly floured uncooked tortillas can be stacked but I’ve noticed if the stack gets higher than four or five they start to stick together.
- heat a large cast iron skillet or griddle over medium to medium high heat (make sure the pan is hot before you put the tortillas in or they wont puff up)
- Griddle the tortilla, turning once, until browned in spots and pliable, about 30 seconds per side. Wrap the tortilla in a towel and repeat with the remaining balls of dough.
- best fresh or once cooled tortillas can be put in a plastic bag and stored overnight.
some recipes call for a rest while the dough is still in one ball, others call for the rest to happen after dividing the dough. I usually do both, especially if the dough is resisting becoming smooth, a little rest and both the dough and I are more relaxed.