This is a hard core geeky recipe for Mexican food obsessives. I've heard that fresh 'masa' the ground corn used for corn tortillas is much tastier so I had a go at making them myself.
500g Field corn (hominy) Either order at huge expense from the states as I did or try this: http://www.tropicalsunfoods.com/product/96/white-hominy-corn.html
5g Pickling lime (slaked lime/calcium hydroxide/white lime/lime paste) It's got nothing to do with lime the fruit.
1.5 litres water
Put everything into a big pot and bring to the boil. Then keep at a low boil for 45 minutes to an hour. You should see the following things:
- The pericarp of the corn should slip off nicely.
- The corn should be sticky.
- The kernel should be softish but firm.
If not all of these things are happening then continue to cook. Do not overcook. I did the first time and the corn over-absorbed the lime and was inedible. It shouldn't look like mush.
Then, the above conditions achieved, take off the heat. Leave to steep for 12 hours. Then rinse three times, rubbing the corn hard to get rid of the pericarp and the lime. I mean this. Really rinse it. You don't want it to taste a bit chemical.
Then, unless you have a wet grinder or a special masa grinding stone from Mexico, grind a quarter of the corn in the food processor. Grind until it is as fine as possible, like flour. The finer the grind, the softer the tortilla. Do the other 3/4 bit by bit. Add salt to taste, quite a lot is needed. I didn't get it as fine as if I had a proper machine but it was pretty good. Postscript: I now have a Vitamix which works brilliantly.
For more information about this go to these sites:
Cooking Issues: http://www.cookingissues.com/2011/03/09/mesoamerican-miracle-megapost-tortillas-and-nixtamalization/
Anson Mills: http://www.ansonmills.com/recipes-hominy.htm