~ How to: Make Crispy Crunchy Corn Tortilla Wisps ~
My husband tells everyone he married me for my taco shells -- it's a truthful joke. There was a period in my life when I made homemade taco shells like some people make homemade pizza -- once a week perhaps. The first time I invited Joe and his two little sons to my apartment for dinner in 1979, I made tacos for the kids. There I was, me and my tortilla press, putting on a show for my future step-sons while my own toddler rode his Hot Wheel in a circle around the coffee table while watching The Price is Right on the TV in my living room. Heartwarming?
I said "I do" in a Justice of the Peace's office on a Friday afternoon and on Saturday morning I was full-time mother of three boys under the age of five. The following is no lie: The very next morning, Eliot, middle son for less than twelve hours, walked into our bedroom, bag in hand, and asked, "can I eat these Doritos for breakfast?" "NO YOU CAN NOT" was my horrified response, and, almost every time I see a bag of Doritos I think about that frightful start to my relationship with that now forty-something child. Those were fun times. A bag of masa, water, one tortilla press and a vat of hot fat -- it kept three kids entertained for hours. Now empty nesters, I don't make tortillas from scratch for Joe and I very often, but, I never resort to store-bought tortilla shells or chips for almost anything. There's a bag of fresh corn tortillas in my refrigerator and from it I can make shells, chips, and, these wisps, which I add to tortilla soup and use as a pretty garnish:
Add 1/4" corn oil to a 12" skillet. Heat over medium-high heat until wavy lines appear on the surface.
~ Step 2. Add all of the tortilla strips to the hot oil in the skillet. Fry until golden brown, about 4 minutes, using a spatula to keep the wispy strips moving around in the oil the entire time. Transfer to a paper towel lined plate and immediately sprinkle with a generous grinding of sea salt.
Cool & store in an airtight container for up to one week:
Special Equipment List: cutting board; chef's knife; 12" skillet, preferably nonstick; paper towels
"We are all in this food world together." ~ Melanie Preschutti
(Recipe, Commentary and Photos courtesy of Melanie's Kitchen/Copyright 2016)