Trying My Hand at Tortillas
One of my favorite foods is homemade tortilla pizzas. My infatuation with these delectable creations began in college, when I wanted a way to frugally make a personal-sized pizza. Sure, I could have bought a full-sized pizza and had lots of leftovers of greasy, carb-loaded slices that would more likely than not sit untouched in the fridge. Or I could find a way to make my own pizzas at home. I started by pre-cooking a tortilla in a small skillet, and then added sauce, cheese, pepperoni, and whatever veggies I might have on hand (which was slim when I was still in school). As long as the toppings went on from the fridge, they cooked pretty quickly. If they were frozen, I had to cook my pizza a bit longer (and on lower heat, to ensure the tortilla didn't burn).
Armed with a basic recipe under my belt, I tried a different method once I moved home after graduation, and I'm proud to say I roped my family into trying it with me. Instead of using a skillet, we baked our tortillas (or wraps) on pizza pans for a few minutes, then loaded them up with sauce, cheese, meat, and veggies before returning them to the oven until all the toppings cooked thoroughly. This method works far better for cooking for multiple people, since you're not limited to the single tortilla you can fit in the skillet at a time.
The oven I have now is fairly small, and because I have discovered how much I love sautéed veggies on my pizzas, I have reverted back to the skillet-cooking method. I realized I was going through quite a few tortillas, though, and it was getting harder and harder for me to find whole-grain ones at the store (since I shop at a small grocery store). As I wasn't willing to compromise my commitment to whole grains, I had to find a different solution: make them on my own.
This undertaking seemed a bit daunting at first, but it really wasn't too bad. Yes, it took some time (a bit more than I expected), but the list of ingredients is wonderfully simple, and the process itself isn't complicated, just time-consuming.
I used the recipe and instructions by Brown Eyed Baker, using the suggested substitution of olive oil for coconut oil, since I'm almost out of coconut oil. I also started the process in a food processor/blender, but it became too difficult to mix, so I put the dough on a large cutting board and finished the job by hand. We don't have a rolling pin, so I used a glass bottle to roll out my dough, giving up really quickly on trying to make them round, because no matter how hard I tried, it just wasn't happening.
Regardless of the lack of round shapes, my tortillas turned out very tasty! I made a wonderfully delicious pizza with one of them last night, topped with mozzarella, sauteed kale, red onion, garlic, red chili flakes, carrots, bell peppers, and tomatoes (are you getting hungry yet?).
I also froze a bunch of the tortillas (separated with plastic wrap to keep them from sticking together) right away for future tacos, wraps, and --of course-- tortilla pizzas. I can't help but think about what variations I might be able to get away with in this recipe, like adding different spices (garlic, basil, oregano, red chili flakes...) for different nuanced flavors. Hmm, maybe that will be another adventure soon!