Demo Day: Tortilla Making

A hand pats out a tortilla on a metal griddle.Mexican and Tejano women made tortillas for their families every morning, waking up before the rest of their households to spend hours bent over a stone corn grinding tool called metate y mano to ensure they were well fed. To create a tortilla, she would first boil corn, or maize, in lime water and leave it to soak overnight so it would be ready the next day. She would typically get her lime from mixing in ashes to her water. This process creates nixtamal, or the first ingredient of a tortilla, and the process of soaking corn in lime water is called nixtamalization.

Some women followed behind the Mexican army as camp followers who assisted the soldados with their daily needs such as doing laundry and cooking. A metate y mano were found on the San Jacinto Battleground after the battle, implying that some women kept up this important routine even while on the move.

Come learn about the process of nixtamalization and see how tortillas would have been made in the 1830s.

Suitable for kids aged 5 and up; younger children are welcome but will need to have an adult to help. This activity is free with price of admission.