Friday, November 30, 2012

Swedish Taco Night Fridays: Corn Tortillas Revisited

Making Chicken Taquitos Again - What Else Is New ?
It came to me as a matter of curiosity if Swedes really know how to use and first prepare Corn Tortillas in order to enjoy them properly. It is only a recent inclusion at the ICA Stores that I have even seen them sold here at all. But flour tortillas are what are best known here and most Swedes use them as a Falafel Wrap like for a burrito or fold them after heating in the microwave into the familiar Taco shape. But if you simply nuke Corn Tortillas  in your  microwave and attempt to fold and use them as a Taco shell, you'll be greatly disappointed. Try and fold one of those nuked Corn Tortillas to make your flavourite Taco and no doubt you will experience it cracking or splitting apart. Who wants that ? Cooking the Corn Tortilla in Canola Oil [ Rapsolja ] not only gives the Corn Tortilla a more pliable leathery texture, but it also enhances and brings out the flavour of the Corn or Maize flour that you otherwise would have missed. To illustrate it another way, it should be done for the same exact reasons you add just enough Salt to your favourite foods and to bring out the flavours within that would otherwise be lost. Beyond this I really don't have much to add other than follow the pictures below and the explanations of what I did yesterday.
Started making more batches of Chicken Taquitos for storage in freezer for future use and decided to also make Corn Tortilla Soft Taco Shells and home made Corn Chips

Put one Corn Tortilla at a time and QUICKLY [do not linger]  cook on both sides. The idea or goal here is to make the Tortilla Taco Shell soft and leathery, not hard and brittle where it will break apart. So quickly warm up and lightly heat both sides inside the Canola Oil in a Cast Iron Frying Pan.
Now while the Tortilla is still hot and pliable, take your Tongs and fold it over halfway to make the folded characteristic Taco Shape.

Put the newly created Soft Taco Shell on a plate of paper towels to drain off excess oil while you place another Tortilla in the pan behind it.

After the Corn Tortilla Taco Shell has drained enough, place in a dish or Taco Shell Warmer which you can put on the table for family and friends to pick and build their own Tacos with all the other ingredients you've provided.

I often will do at least two at a time to speed things along. Here's an important note. Pay attention! DON'T cook them too long. If you do, you will get nothing more than a glorified large Taco Chip which will crack and break when you attempt to open it up and fill with your flavourite ingredients. REMEMBER, you want it to be the consistency and texture of soft leather. I know you all know what I'm taking about. You may need to practice this.

Okay, shifting gears here for a moment. You can actually cut an entire stack of Corn Tortillas with a shape knife into triangular wedges for making Corn Chips for dipping into Salsa or Guacamole. Most of the store brand Tortilla chips sold in Sweden are from a liquid corn flour dough mix which is shaped or injected into a mold into the characteristic triangle or round shapes for Nacho chips and then cooked. These are not the true chips served at Mexican Restaurants over in the States or Mexico. Most make their own and serve them hot to you as an appetizer. These chips are superior in flavour and texture. 

Again place and cook them in the Canola Oil just like you did the whole round corn Tortilla for Taco Shell creation. However in this case, you want to leave them longer to become hard and crispy, but not too long or they will burn.

Once again, just as you did with the Corn Taco Shells, place these chips on a paper towel to drain and lightly salt them. Notice the right amount of Taco Chip colouring here ? Then just place them all in a large bowl for serving on the table.

Ooooookay, and finally one last picture. This is what you don't want to do. I had one last batch of corn wedges and was in a hurry, turned up the heat and covered with a lid. Got busy doing other things and saw the steam arising from the lid and found the darker chips. However, unbelievably they still tasted good. But it's a colour thing. Looks better to your guests to have the light crispy look as opposed to burnt!!!
Enjoy Your Friday Taco Night!


  1. I love (Swedish) tacos, hehe. But you are right, most "Swedish" Mexican food products are probably not very true to the original ones.

    It was interesting to read how you make your Mexican food and I love all the photos you took to illustrate it. Those homemade Corn Chips look especially delicious (except the burnt ones). ;)

    Thanks for sharing!

    1. They are actually very easy to work with. For the moment I have several bags of Frozen Taquitos in the Freezer waiting to be fried and served. You need to start posting Persian Food recipes.

      For example Persian Rice with Saffron, Dates, Raisins and shredded orange peel.

    2. I have never made that type of Persian rice myself, but I do have other Persian dishes in mind which I have thought about posting many times - but just not gotten around to doing so... But I will definitely take your request onboard and post some more persian recipes next year. :)

  2. Yes, I love Persian Foods. I once had the privilege of giving a Public Address in Reseda California which is actually a part of greater Los Angeles to a group of Persian speaking people. I had an interpreter.

    Later they took me out to a Persian restaurant there and I cannot believe the Mountain of Rice dish they pile on everyone's plate. Do they all really eat that much rice ? The food was good and believe it or not I didn't feel full. I guess rice isn't so filling.



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