Tortillas de Nopal (Cactus Tortillas)

Cuisine: Mexican
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Servings: 16 tortillas
This may sound exotic but it's super easy, and it's a healthier way to enjoy your tacos.

Here's a fun and healthy twist on your tortillas - use nopales, or cactus pads! Nopal is a common ingredient throughout Mexico. It can be eaten fresh in a salad, canned or dried. It has a slightly sour taste and is delicious in both sweet and savory recipes. You can find it in most Latin supermarkets.

Nopal is a low-fat, high-fiber food, so if you use it to make your tortillas, you'll add tons of taste and fiber to your dish. Some people also add flaxseed or chia seeds, or even two tablespoons of oatmeal. I keep it simple and just add flaxseeds, but it's up to you!


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  1. Cook the cactus pads in boiling water for approximately 5 to 10 minutes or until they are soft, with a dash of salt and half a teaspoon of baking soda.
  2. Mix the cactus pads (nopal) with the parsley or cilantro in a blender.
  3. In a bowl, add the masa harina and slowly add the nopal mix and the warm water, until the dough is soft and does not stick, similar to cookie dough.
  4. Once the dough is at its desired consistency, add the flaxseeds (optional), and lastly, the salt.
  5. Separate the dough in even, small balls. Refrigerate for 10 minutes to an hour.
  6. Flatten each ball between two sheets of plastic wrap with a tortilla press, or with a wine bottle or roller.
  7. Cook each side for 1 to 2 minutes, or until they puff, on medium-high heat, with a lightly greased skillet or comal. Keep in mind, nopal burns a little easier so keep your eyes on the tortillas so they don't burn!
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