This Masa Harina Batter Can Make Anything Taste Like Tortilla Chips

Usually cooks use masa to make the pliable tortillas we prime with absolutely anything. Usually cooks use masa to make the pliable tortillas we prime with absolutely anything. But it surely’s made right into a panoply of different shapes too, equivalent to steamy tamales, stuffed sopes, and chochoyotes, to call just some. In addition to the dishes which are outlined by masa, you can even use it in pancakes, shortcakes, cornbread, cookies, and—my present crush—fried rooster.

This thought got here by means of a spacey mistake. Despite the fact that I’m knowledgeable chef, I am not all the time meticulous within the kitchen, particularly my very own throughout off hours. At some point, once I was fulfilling an obligation to make tamales for my buddies (google Rosca de Reyes and tiny child Jesus to get why), I unintentionally poured twice as a lot water into the masa harina as I ought to have. It appeared identical to fry batter.

I ended up fixing these tamales, however the thought of turning masa dough into batter caught. So I did it once more, on goal, with bone-in rooster items. The end result: a brilliant crispy, tremendous flavorful crust. I attempted all types of variations, however discovered that every one you really want is masa harina, cornstarch, and water. To gild the lily for this recipe, some heat spices and musky lime zest tie all of it collectively.

Masa dough can come collectively two methods: The primary is from freshly floor nixtamalized corn, yielding a moist dough that holds an imprint of your thumb like reminiscence foam. Made by Indigenous Mexican communities for years, freshly floor masa is having one thing of an American renaissance. The second means is from rehydrated masa harina, which is a shelf-stable flour of dried, floor nixtamalized corn. Nixtamalization sounds tremendous science-y, however simply think about it as a course of that “spins corn into gold.” Dried corn is steeped in water combined with calcium hydroxide, which is an alkaline answer. This permits the outer shell to be simply eliminated and makes the corn extra digestible, nourishing, and flavorful.

Masa harina has quite a lot of massive advantages over all-purpose flour. It’s naturally gluten-free, which is nice for those who’re searching for that, nevertheless it’s a lot greater than that too. Once you batter rooster in masa, you’re equipping the rooster with a sturdy, crisp exterior, serving to it keep juicy and tender. Additionally, identical to that botched tamale dough, masa batter may be actually forgiving. Skinny with extra liquid or thicken with extra masa harina—the vary of fine outcomes is huge. Because the rooster cooks, the batter puffs greater than AP would, making a crispy-yet-light crust. The perfect half although? The distinctly tortilla chip–esque taste.

Masa batter does not should be only for rooster. It may be used for something you’d shallow- or deep-fry. Batter shrimp and serve with a contemporary salsa. Batter cheese-stuffed poblanos for a tackle chile rellenos. Batter onion rings, inexperienced beans, or zucchini for a snacky appetizer. Even batter bananas, figs, or peaches, then deliver on the vanilla ice cream.

Platter of fried chicken.  - 0701 masa fried chicken lede - This Masa Harina Batter Can Make Anything Taste Like Tortilla Chips
Masa-Fried Rooster With Lime Cabbage Slaw

These crunchy tenders will provide you with tortilla chip vibes in one of the simplest ways (and so they simply so occur to be gluten-free).

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