Here at the hive, we encourage kids to help in the kitchen. From a home educator point of view, cooking helps kids gain confidence while practicing life skills. From a busy mom point of view, cooking with kids gears them up for cooking my meals and serving me breakfast in bed.
I can dream.
The older kids have figured out my motives, but Baby Honeybee is still young enough to think it’s all kinds of fun to be in the kitchen. Do not tell her of my plans, please.
In my defense, the people who live in this house think they must eat everyday.
We I spend much of my day in the kitchen. When the opportunity arises to have a helper, I grab it!
This is one of those times. Corn tortillas are so easy a child can make them, so she did!
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1 3/4 cups masa harina (corn flour)
1 1/4 cups hot water*
*The water needs to be as hot as your little hands can handle. When cooking with kids, use warm water to keep their precious mitts safe!
Place the masa in a large bowl.
Add the water.
By hand, quickly mix the two together. The easiest way to mix is by making a claw with your hand and moving in circles. Your hands will get gooey and squishy, but kids are into that.
Keep working the dough until all bits of flour are cleaned from the bowl. You may need to add a little more water to help the dough come together in a firm ball. If it’s too crumbly, add more water a tablespoon at a time.
When you have a firm ball of dough, cover it with plastic and just walk away. Let it sit for 30 minutes so the flour evenly absorbs all the water.
After 30 minutes, heat a cast iron griddle, skillet or comal to medium high heat. I have a Lodge cast iron griddle that is perfect for this task and so many others.
Gather your tortilla rolling supplies. If you have a tortilla press, use it! It makes life easier. If you don’t, just use a rolling pin.
The easiest way I’ve found to press the tortillas is to use a quart-size plastic freezer bag. Split the side seems all the way down and lay the bag across the press.
Pinch of a golf-ball sized piece of dough and roll it into a ball.
Place the dough ball in the press, off-setting it toward the hinge as the dough pushes the opposite direction when pressed. Fold the plastic bag over the dough, close the press and push down on the handle. It may take a few times to get the correct positioning, but you can do it. I believe in you!
Now you have a nice, perfectly round-ish tortilla!
If you prefer a thinner tortilla, keep the flattened dough between the plastic. Using a rolling pin, roll out from the center all the way around.
Gently peel the tortilla away from the plastic bag and place on a hot griddle. I like to lightly mist my griddle with grapeseed or olive oil. I like the way it browns better than with no oil. If you’re a purist, you can skip this step. Go with your heart.
Cook for 30 seconds, or until browned and puffy, then flip. Cook for another 30 seconds, then transfer to a plate. Cover with a clean kitchen towel to keep warm and moist as you prepare the remaining tortillas.
If you have mad skillz like Baby Honeybee, you may come up with some artistic shapes like this homage to the Berenstain Bears. I think this one is Brother Bear.
Crazy, huh? In the picture below, the eye is more noticeable. Because that’s what we all want in a tortilla. Noticeable eyes.
That’s all there is to it! Stuff with your favorite taco fillings or grill a quesadilla. Or, just eat them plain like Baby Honeybee does.
I’m not sure if there is a standard procedure for eating a bear-head tortilla like there is for a chocolate bunny. I’m thinking the nose goes first.
Follow my Healthy Kids Pinterest Board for more inspiration and recipes to make with your kids!