NOT in the microwave! The will have nothing of the authentic texture, the occasional delightful bubble that indicates that your fresh (even if you buy manufactured tortillas in a bag, as opposed to buying handmade tortillas – which are available at La Palma- and re-heating them, tortillas still need to be fresh to be good, check the date printed on the package. According to Mission Foods, which manufactures tortillas and other masa-based product “the typical shelf life of Mission products stored at ambient temperature (unopened package): Flour tortillas: 14 – 35 days; Corn tortillas: 8 – 35 days.
How long you can keep the tortillas after opening the package depends on the handling conditions the product was exposed to. If you are not going to consume the whole package after opening it, wash your hands, remove the tortillas you will need and tightly close the package. The product should be good until the expiration date printed on the package.
While, it is okay to freeze tortillas. It is very important that you let them thaw in the refrigerator for a day or two before using them. Corn tortillas should not be thawed in the microwave.”
For ideas and recipes on how to use leftover tortillas see Using leftover a la Mexicana part 1: tortillas
- A comal is the flat iron grill used to heat tortillas, (in a typical Mexican kitchen, this is never put away, it just sits on top of the stove, always at the ready). It comes as a round disc, about 12″ in diameter, which is perfect for a family of 4, or oval, which heats 6 tortillas at a time, for a larger crowd. If you want it to look like you know your way around a comal, learn to grab the tortillas with your finger tips to flip them and remove them from the fire. No self-respecting Mexican turns tortillas with a spatula or tongs.
- Seasoning your new comal You need to prepare the comal before you use it for the first time by washing it with warm soapy water and dry it thoroughly, this is best done by putting it on a hot burner for a few minutes to really evaporate every drop of water. Next, you’ll want to lightly coat the pan with vegetable oil which prevent rust spots. Chelsie Kenyon recommends that you “Place the comal in a hot oven, at least 350 degrees and bake it for one hour. Remove it, let it cool then wipe off excess residue. Re-apply the oil then heat for an additional hour, turn the oven off and then let it cool in the oven overnight. Wipe off any residues and your comal is now ready for use”.
- Cleaning and Care After use, you’ll just want to scrape scrape off any excess food with spatula to scrape off any excess food with a metal spatula, wash normally with warm soapy water and it return it immediately to the stove (high flmae) to prevent rust. Chelsie continues, “Every once in a while, rub oil on the surface to keep it well seasoned. The more you use a comal, the more flavor it will impart to your food, so use it often”. If it does develop rust, don’t worry, just use steel wool to scrub off the rust is removed, rinse thoroughly and repeat seasoning instructions above.
AComal available at Casa Lucas on 24th and Florida for $8.00 or on line through MexiGrocer.com for $10.95 + $6.95 shipping