Homemade Tortillas and Quesadillas

I used to purchase Tortillas in the grocery store.  Not anymore! This recipe is the bomb.  I texted a friend who was visiting friends in Texas.  In a few minutes, she had sent me a recipe.

“I don’t usually use a recipe, but this looks like what I make,” she said.

The Tortillas

It comes from the cookbook Savour Belize and the author is Mrs. Zelah Kropf.

There are no directions for this recipe, so I had to text Anna again and ask her what to do after I’d mixed the dough.

This recipe is so easy and such fun to make.  The dough texture is great to work with. You can pat the tortillas out into a circle or roll them out with a rolling pin.  Anna said she pats her tortillas into a circle, but we used a rolling pin.

You’ll need flour, baking powder, salt, shortening (vegetable oil), and water.  The directions call for shortening, so I had to text Anna again to ask her what she uses.  Vegetable oil it is.

Mix your dry ingredients, then add the wet ingredients.

Use a little flour or cornmeal to roll them out. To fry the tortillas, spray a skillet and fry for about 30 seconds per side.  This photo shows one tortilla on our Cook-n-Dine.

The Quesadillas

Chop your onions, shallots, and peppers.  Add mushrooms and saute.

To make your quesadillas, you’ll need refried beans, shredded cheese, mushrooms, onions, peppers, shallots and/or onions, bacon (fried and crumbled), beef, chicken, or any other meat you’d like to add.

Place refried beans on half of your tortilla, then add the toppings of your choice.  Fold the other half over your toppings, and fry, flipping over when one side is browned and the cheese is melted.

In this photo, you can see my Cook-n-Dine.  On it, we fried the tortillas, sauteed the vegetables, and then fried the quesadillas (which is why it looks so well-used.)

Serve your quesadilla with salsa and/or sour cream or yogurt.

Enjoy!

 

 

 

Homemade Tortillas and Quesadillas

My Windowsill
A simple, easy recipe for homemade tortillas and directions for quesadillas as well.
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Total Time 30 mins
Course Dinner
Cuisine Belizian
Servings 18 -20

Ingredients
  

  • 6 cups flour
  • 6 tsp. baking powder
  • 3/4 shortening vegetable oil
  • 3 tsp. salt
  • 2 cups water more or less to make a soft dough

Instructions
 

  • Mix dry ingredients together (flour, baking powder, and salt)
  • Add shortening and water
  • Divide into 18-20 pieces
  • Roll or pat each piece into a circle, using flour if dough is sticky
  • Using high heat, spray a skillet and fry tortilla, approximately 30 minutes per side
  • The dough can also be rolled into balls and put into a bag or tightly covered container
  • Store in the refrigerator for use later that day.
  • Take dough out of the refrigerator 10-20 minutes before you are ready to fry them so they can warm to room temperature.

Baked Macaroni

When you’re searching for an easy recipe to take to a potluck or to serve for Sunday lunch, this recipe is an easy go-to one. There is  no last-minute stirring and mixing because it will have been done three hours earlier.

You can choose your style of macaroni; I usually use elbow macaroni, but that’s entirely up to you.  You’ll need butter, milk, shredded cheese (or Velveeta), and Salt and Pepper.  Oh yes, you’ll need three-plus hours of time before it’s ready to serve.  How easy is that?

Start by melting the butter in the pan you’ll be using (which depends on how many batches of this you’ll be making). For one recipe, I use a 9 x 9 casserole dish.

Melt the margarine in the bottom of the pan, then add your dry macaroni and salt and pepper.  If you’re a garlic or onion fan, you can toss some powder or the real stuff in there.  Mix it together.

Add your cheese and mix it well.

This is where I don’t quite follow the directions.  It says to add the milk and not stir it, but I do (just a little).

Put the pan into a pre-heated oven set at 235.  Cover it and bake for three hours.  I really like the Lily pad covers I have.  I prefer these to foil wrap because they are reusable, are dishwasher, stovetop, and oven  safe. This one doesn’t quite fit the corners, but it still works.  I have a rectangular one I could have used, but  it is quite a bit larger than this pan.

The finished product. I like to use this dish when I am using canned beef heated in a skillet.  A dish of green beans and a red congealed salad (or some applesauce) tops off the meal.

This chart is helpful if you want to double or triple the recipe.

Baked Macaroni

My Windowsill
An easy recipe for baked macaroni - easy to mix, simple to bake, and filling to serve.
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 3 hrs
Total Time 3 hrs 20 mins
Course Main Dish
Cuisine American
Servings 6 -8

Ingredients
  

  • 1 1/2 cups macaroni
  • 2 Tbsp. melted butter
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • Pepper to taste
  • Onion minced, and/or garlic (optional)
  • 1 1/4 cups Velveeta OR shredded cheese I recommend Velveeta
  • 4 cups milk

Instructions
 

  • Melt margarine in bottom of 9 x 9-inch pan.
  • Add macaroni, salt and pepper, and stir.
  • Mix in cheese and milk.
  • Cover and bake at 235 for 3 hours.
  • Remove from oven.
  • Let set for 10 minutes before serving.

 

One thing I love about Amazon is the free shipping.  You can have these lids at your house in short order.  I have never regretted purchasing these.  I don’t think you will, either.


Colored Easter Eggs

eggs colored in carton

Coloring eggs for Easter was a yearly tradition.  I don’t know how many days the colored eggs sat in a basket on the kitchen table, but I am certain it was not just a day or two.  We ate them, and no one got sick.

A week or two before Easter, our mother hard-boiled several dozen eggs. The oilcloth on the kitchen table was covered with newspapers as we filled mug after mug with different colors of water in order to decorate our eggs.  I remember that smell of vinegar and the sound of spoons clinking in the mugs as we colored egg after egg.

When our kids were growing up, I colored eggs with them – but it seemed my boys weren’t as intrigued with this business as my girls.

This week we had two munchkins visit us for a few days, and then 48 hours after that, three more came to hang out for a few.  I decided it was time to color Easter eggs again.  Only this time, the food coloring I used was a gel.  Now I don’t know what I did before I had gel food coloring!  I ordered mine off Amazon almost a year ago, and in addition to using it for coloring play dough, it’s been used for decorating cookies and cupcakes.  I have also used food coloring to make the stuffed Easter eggs.  That was before I had my gel coloring, and when I make these stuffed eggs this week, I’ll be using the gel coloring, and I’m certain they won’t need to be in the water that long!

The recipe is so simple that you will wonder why you don’t do it more often.

If you’re using a regular food coloring, you’ll need about 20 drops per 1/2 cup of water.  If you choose to use gel, you’ll only need 5 drops to bring vibrant colors to your eggs.

Water, vinegar, coloring – and the eggs

To each 1/2 cup of water, add 1 Tablespoon vinegar (white) and 5 drops of gel food coloring (more if you want it really vibrant, and less if you’re into pastel colors.)  Mix those three ingredients together with a metal spoon, then put your egg(s) into the different containers.  It will only take a few minutes to color the eggs, so check them often.

If you want to make a math lesson out of this, predict how much longer the eggs need to stay in the colored water if you use half the amount of drops.  There are any number of math problems you can use with this project!

My munchkins helped stir the vinegar and gel color into the water. They thought it was so much fun, and so did I. (You really need to excuse the backdrop in my photos. I hadn’t planned on doing a blog post on this, as I’m sure you can tell by all the things hanging out on my countertop.)

 

This is a great activity to get rid of some rainy-day wiggles in kids.  They are busy with their minds and their hands, and they’re having fun while learning.

I’ve had a busy week at my house.  During five of the past seven days, I’ve had extra kids hanging out with me.  Even the squirmiest of kids sat still for this project!

eggs collage

For a few of the eggs, we sat them on a wire whisk so they were only partly in the water.  Then we turned the egg around and colored the other side a different color.

Little man was so intrigued by the colors of the water and would have stirred it for hours.

And little miss?  She was in her glory, especially when she got to wear my daughter’s VT apron to protect her clothes.

eggs Shanti

I used the empty carton from the eggs to store the eggs as they dried.  Then we wiped them out and returned the eggs to the carton.

eggs in carton

We had quite a few splotches, and our two-toned eggs could  have looked better, but considering that I was the only adult in the kitchen, it was a success.

eggs stages

Don’t you think it’s more fun to do things like this when you’ve got a few kids to help?  I do!

For this set of eggs, I increased the water to 3/4 cup and added the same amount of gel and vinegar.  The eggs were lighter in color, as I expected.

eggs in carton

 

Anybody can tell they’re not done perfectly.  I’ve always chosen the help of kids over perfection.

This week, two sets of kids went home happy with eggs they had helped color.  It was fun making  memories together.

 

Colored Easter Eggs

My Windowsill
Coloring Easter eggs just got easier with gel food coloring. The colors are more vibrant, and it takes half the time.
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 12 mins
Total Time 27 mins
Course Miscellaneous
Cuisine American

Ingredients
  

  • Hard-boiled eggs as many as you'd like
  • 1/2 cup cold water
  • 1 Tablespoon white vinegar
  • 5 drops gel food coloring OR approximately 20 drops regular food coloring

Instructions
 

  • Bring water in a kettle to a boil
  • Add eggs, cover with a lid, and simmer for 12 minutes
  • Remove eggs from boiling water
  • Run cold water over the eggs
  • To chill quickly, place in iced water
  • To color eggs, mix water, vinegar and gel coloring with a metal spoon
  • Put eggs into colored water and remove when desired color

 

A Survey For My Readers

 

It’s August.  That means summer is nearly over and schools are about to open.  Have you been as busy as I have?!

If you’ve been reading my blog regularly, would you help me out by filling out this survey via Survey Monkey?  It will  help me learn to know my readers better.  I hope to get a feel for the struggles you have and the trials you face.

And, in case you’re wondering, I won’t be able to tell who responded or what individual people wrote.  That is, unless you decide to add something in a comment to let  me know who you are or where you’re from. 🙂

I do like surprises.  There might be one in there somewhere for you.

There are only 10 questions on this survey.

To take the survey, all you need to do is click HERE

 

Thanks a big bunch!

Gertsurvey 1

Recipes

Our house was dubbed Linger Longer by the folks who built the house in 1927.  We’ve lived here for 21 years, and I’ve cooked a mess of meals in this kitchen!  Families have their own recipe favorites, and so does mine.  In this section, you’ll find recipes that are used most often in our kitchen at Linger Longer.   These are the ones I turn to readily, and I hope you’ll enjoy them as well.

apples hoosier cabinet
This Hoosier cabinet has been in my family’s kitchen for more years than I can remember. The baskets belonged to my mother. When I look at this picture, I remember a kitchen with amazing aromas, tender warmth, and laughter of family.