Sunday, April 18, 2010

52 Projects Weeks 12 & 13


Better late than never, I say often these days! Here I am, once again, posting two weeks at once. I console myself with the fact that I am actually doing the projects, just bogging down in getting them posted.

Week 12: Homemade corn tortillas!

This project was born of my utter disgust with the corn tortilla options available locally. If you have ever lived in San Diego, or some other city where you are fortunate enough to coexist with a strong hispanic population, you may have been lucky enough to have eaten warm, soft fresh corn tortillas. If you haven't, I recommend you add it to your list of things to do during this lifetime, truly worth it. They're good absolutely plain! If you have, and compared them to the shelf stable kind, than you can probably empathize with my utter dispair when biting into the corn tortillas available to me in Upstate New York. They resemble not so much food as something that you should ship something in or store something in. In other words, cardboard.

So there I was, about 2 weeks ago, at Wegmans. I must digress further for a moment to mention that I LOVE Wegmans for many reasons, largely because they make available a large variety of foods that would otherwise be hard to find in a town of this size. Anyway, so there I was, with Tacos on the menu plan, feeling the stiff packets of tortillas. Then the inspiration struck! It was not hopeless! I could make my own! So Helena and I cruised over to the International Foods section and grabbed a bag of Masa.

It was a fairly simple process to make them. You mix in the water and let it sit to absorb, then form it into balls.

Then comes the tricky part. You press them with your tortilla press. Aha! But I don't have one. Did, back in San Diego, but never needed it, so it didn't make the cut of things moved with us. Little did I know....
So we rolled them between wax paper. Then cooked them on a dry pan for about a minute on each side. You can see below, our results were unattractive. But ever so tasty! I thought 16 tortillas would be way too many, but we had only these two left after dinner.

Going to hunt for a tortilla press.

And Week 13:

Clipped the cat's claws. This is such a silly, simple one. But I bought the clippers about 8 months ago, and hadn't done it until now. Partly because I just found them in the boxes of yet to be unpacked goods. But also because I was petrified that I would hurt her.

But she really needed it. She's 16, getting slow, and her nails are long. She's an absolute sweetheart and has never ruined furniture until now, because she uses her claws to pull herself up, now that jumping is getting harder. She's incredibly gentle which made it easy-I'm not sure I would recommend trying it on a feisty one, might be worth paying a groomer.

I watched this great video, made locally, which took away my fear.

No photos of the process, but here's the proof.

Happy Week!


dreamer said...

Home made fresh tortillas are lush :)

Hope your kitty cat feels better after having it's claws done. Funny how we sometimes put off doing things for so long when they take no time at all once you eventually get around to it. It gives you a real buzz though when you do finally get around to it.

Diana said...

Dreamer, your absolutely right about that buzz. I've been making a point of pushing through things I've been feels great!

Arianna (Erika) said...

It does not matter how the tortillas look, they are still delicious :) My grandma used to make them by patting them between her hands and they came better than anything else we used.
I have 3 cats and the third one is a latest addition to our family and he is a scratcher... and trying to cut his nails is interesting to say the least.

Jane said...

Breen and I went to San Diego last summer and we were ready to stay there forever, good Mexican food or not :))I so want to try making my own corn tortilla. In our house, there is a very divided camp: soft shell tacos or crunchy tacos. I love them crunchy. A few years ago I bought little baking pans to put soft tortilla shells in to. You bake them in the oven and then fill them with all your favorite things. I've never used them but I will now! I used to have 5 cats many, many years ago and I was never brave enough to clip their nails :)

K A B L O O E Y said...

Homemade corn tortillas and cutting your cat's nails. A very ambitious couple of weeks. I'm in the soft corn tortilla camp myself but have never made them. That looks fun. I do cut my kitty's nails, and she's also 16 (or is it 17) and uses her nails to climb because her vertical leap isn't what it used to be. I used to wrap her tightly in a blanket and poke one paw out at a time. Made her feel more secure and made it MUCH easier for me.