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Taco Shells, Tortilla Press, Tortilla Soup and Tortilla Bowls

Welcome to Tortillas.com
Since 1998 we have been the ultimate Online source for Tortillas and more!  Our site features a wide variety of Tortillas and Tortilla By-Product Resources from one convenient location.  You will find Tortillas and Tortilla Products which are ideal for Residential and Commercial use.  Visit us often, we continually feature New Item Resources such as Corn Tortillas, Flour Tortillas, Tortilla Presses, Tortilla Griddles, Tortilla Makers, Tortilla Warmers and more!
historyoftortillas
The Past
Tortillas or “tlaxcalli” as they were known in the native Nahuatl language, are thought to date back as far as 10,000 B.C.  According to Mayan legend, tortillas were invented in ancient times by a peasant for his hungry king.  In 1519, Hernán Cortés and his Conquistadores arrived in the “New World” (modern-day Cuba and Mexico).  In 1520, in Cortés’ second letter to the King of Spain, he describes public squares where daily markets were held and attended by thousands of people that bought and sold a great variety of merchandise and foods.  Among the foods he described were Indian corn (maize) in grains and in the form of “flat corn bread”.  This corn bread was later given the name “tortilla” by the Spanish.

Aztec-tortilleras-1

Aztec drawing with Spanish text of an Aztec woman teaching her daughter how to make tortillas.

In 1529, the Franciscan friar Bernardino de Sahagun, in his expansive manuscripts - General History of the Things of New Spain (Historia general de las cosas de Nueva España), described how the Aztec   diet was based on corn, tortillas, tamales and a wide variety of chilies.  His work is known as the most complete record of Aztec eating habits and foods.  His work went on to include a total of twelve manuscript books that expanded into a description and history of the Aztec civilization.
Traditionally, corn tortillas were made by soaking corn kernels in a lime/water solution, to remove their skins, and then grinding them into corn dough (masa).  A golf ball size piece of dough was then patted down by hand and into a thin pancake shape, It was then placed on to a hot griddle (comal) and cooked on both sides; this tortilla making process is still in use today.

Las-tortilleras

1836 lithograph of women making tortillas in a rural Mexican village.

The Present
Today, personal and industrial tortilla making equipment facilitate and expedite the tortilla making process.  Manually operated wooden tortilla presses of the past have led to today’s industrial tortilla machinery which can produce thousands of tortillas per minute.  Tortillas are now not only made from corn but from flour and wheat as well and also come in a multitude of flavors and varieties, from traditional to gourmet to organic.
The natural nutritional benefits of corn and flour tortillas have helped tortillas rise in popularity with today’s, growing, health conscious populations.  The average brand and serving size of a corn tortilla is naturally low in fat (approximately 1 gram), low in sodium and contains calcium, potassium and fiber.  The average brand and serving size of a flour tortilla is also low in fat (approximately 2.5 grams) and contains iron and B vitamins.
Tortillas are a staple food in Mexico and Central America and they have gained popularity and market share in the United States, Canada and other countries around the world.  In the U.S., tortillas have grown from an “ethnic” food to a mainstream food.  In the U.S., tortillas have surpassed bagels and muffins, to come only second in place to sliced bread!  Tortillas have now become the Number 2 packaged bread product sold in the U.S.  It is estimated, by the Tortilla Industry Association (TIA), that in the U.S. alone, the tortilla industry (tortillas and its by-products – tortilla chips, tostada shells and taco shells) has become a $6 billion a year industry.

  The Future

Tortillas keep gaining popularity and market share in different parts of the world.  For instance, in order to better serve the growing tortilla market in Asia, some major tortilla producers have invested hundreds of millions of dollars opening tortilla making plants in China and Japan.  Some big tortilla producers have plants in multiple regions such as North America, Central America, South America and Western Europe. Because of increased Worldwide demand there are now tortilla producers in many other Regions Around the World including Eastern Europe, East Asia, the Middle East and Africa.

Flour and Corn Tortillas

White Flour and Yellow Corn Tortillas


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