The potato, indigenous to South America, did not get to Mexico until the eighteenth century. That the Spaniards took it all the way to Europe before it made its way north is quite unimaginable. Corn tortillas, on the other hand are distinctly Mexican and Central American, but versions do exist in South America, made with the same masa. The inclusion of other flours is common in Latin America, as is altering the thickness of some of their flatbreads (think Salvadorian pupusas). The potato shreds in this recipe offer a purple landscape to a thin, pliable, and flavorful flatbread that puts any store-purchased corn tortilla to shame. And the fact that two out of the four largest crops in the world are in one recipe (corn and potatoes) is so cool in my nerdy estimation. - Raghavan Iver
Jonathan made this recipe for us as part of a Cook the Book campaign for Smashed, Mashed, Boiled and Baked by Raghavan Iyer.
*Look for bags of masa harina in the Latin American aisle of your supermarket. Regular cornmeal is not a substitute for this flour, as it is grainier and does not hold together as well to make a soft and cohesive dough. Masa dough is easy to work with once you understand it has a tendency to dry out very quickly. Keep the rest covered under damp paper towels as you press your individual dough rounds to make the shells. Keep a bowl of hot water around so you can wet your hand and work that moisture into the dough. As you shape the round, if it cracks around the edges, that's a telltale sign that the dough is dry. Reconstitute it by kneading in more moisture with a wet hand.
Yield: 16 tortillas
Chef Raghavan Iyer
Established in 1937, the Idaho Potato Commission (IPC) is a state agency that is responsible for promoting and protecting the famous "Grown in Idaho®" seal, a federally registered trademark that assures consumers they are purchasing genuine, top-quality Idaho® potatoes. Idaho's ideal growing conditions, including rich, volcanic soil, climate and irrigation differentiate Idaho® potatoes from potatoes grown in other states.
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