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Honduras - Honduran Recipes


The sun doesn't rise in Honduras if tortillas aren't served for breakfast.  Not to worry.  You will see tortillas served three times a day, and always, always freshly made.

I remember returning from Honduras and preparing my first Latin American/Honduran meal.  I was pressed for time and grabbed some pre-made tortillas.  The food I made was excellent.  My wife and I each bit into the store-bought tortillas about the same time.  Our eyes met.  I knew I would never be serving store-bought tortillas again.

Making tortillas isn't that difficult if you are willing to take a couple of short-cuts:

▪     Buy a corn masa harina mix, such as Maseca.  You can find it in Mexican grocery stores or some larger super-markets in the Latina section of town.  Don't confuse this with corn meal which is a totally different product.

[Masa harina is merely ground corn that has been prepared by soaking the corn in lime-water.  The corn is then dried and ground.  The lime creates a chemical reaction in the corn, creating more complete protein thru additional amino acids.  The ancient Mayans created the same effect by soaking the corn in a lye-water, water that had been dripped through wood ashes.  This water
makes the whole kernel - minus the husk - edible without grinding it.  How did they know to do that?  Is this the law of unintended consequences at play?]

Where were we?

▪     Buy a torilla press in any Latin American food store.  If stuck, buy one online. They can be as fancy or simple as you would like.  We like the smaller tortillas - 6" inch press.  We paid 2/3rd's of what they cost online by shopping the local Mexican store.  Buy some spices and practice your Spanish while you are there.

Recipe - Feeds 2.  Increase amounts for larger groups

▪     1 cup of masa mix
▪     1/2-3/4 cup of water

▪     Mix for 2 minutes or until you have a solid ball.  [Add only a little at a time until the right consistency occurs.   This is critical}.
▪     Divide into 8 pieces.  [Moisten a kitchen towel and keep it over the dough during the entire time].
▪     Place one piece of the dough on your tortilla press between pieces of wax paper.  Press firmly and peel the tortilla off the press.  [I have repeated tried to make tortillas by hand.  Despite watching this process very carefully throughout Central America, my handmade tortillas are a disaster.  It is not going to happen in this lifetime.  I have too many Teutonic genes in me].
▪     Toss the tortillas onto an ungreased iron griddle, turning just as they begin to burn.

Keep tortillas warmed under a kitchen towel while others are cooking.  Serve.  Yes-s-s-s.




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