These flour tortillas are easy to make. They’re soft, slightly chewy and perfect for rolling up around fillings.


  • 2 cups (500 mL) whole barley flour
  • 1 cup (250 mL) all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) baking powder
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) salt
  • 1/3 cup (75 mL) cold vegetable shortening, cubed
  • 1 cup (250 mL) warm water

In a food processor, place barley and all-purpose flours, baking powder and salt. Process to combine. Add shortening. Process on low speed for 10 seconds, until shortening is distributed throughout the flour as fine crumbs. With processor on, slowly pour in half of the water. Add just enough of the remaining water until dough pulls away from the side of the bowl. You may not need it all, or you may need a little more. Dough should be sticky, but not wet.

Remove dough to a lightly floured surface; knead for about 1 minute, until smooth and elastic. Pat dough into a 5- to 6-inch (13 to 15 cm) circle, about 1 inch (2.5 cm) thick. Place in a shallow bowl and cover with a damp cloth. Let rest for 10 minutes. Remove to a floured surface and cut into 12 pieces. Roll each piece into a ball; place dough balls back in bowl, cover, and let rest for another 10 minutes.

Heat an ungreased, heavy-bottomed skillet (cast iron is ideal) over medium-high heat. Roll out dough balls into 6-inch (15 cm) rounds. Place one tortilla in the skillet and cook 45 to 60 seconds, just until surface starts to show air pockets. Turn tortilla over and cook another 30 to 45 seconds, until tortilla is slightly puffed and lightly charred in spots.

Layer cooked tortillas between waxed paper or parchment paper to keep soft and warm until serving.

Serve tortillas warm with prepared fillings.

Layered tortillas can be wrapped tightly with foil or plastic wrap and refrigerated for up to 2 days, or frozen for up to 1 month. To reheat, place foil-wrapped tortillas in a 200°F (100°C) oven just until warmed through, or unwrap and heat individually on low heat in microwave.

Makes 12 6-inch (15 cm) tortillas.

Nutritional Information (per tortilla): Calories: 149; Protein: 1 g; Carbohydrate: 21 g; Fibre: 3 g; Sugars: 0 g; Fat: 8 g; Saturated Fat: 1.5 g; Trans Fat: 0 g; Cholesterol: 0 mg; Sodium: 228 mg; Potassium: 11 mg