Behind the Dish: When Flour Tortillas Stand In for Pancakes

April 2, 2024Content Strategy Tips, Food Photography, Recipe Development

How a client’s pancake-flavored flour tortillas lead to a satisfying recipe and image.

Sometimes, the work you’re most proud of isn’t the flashiest.

That’s the case with this Brown Sugar Peach “Tostada,” a simple dessert on a white plate with a white background:

recipe using maple pancake-flavored flour tortillas

As is often the case with simple things, a lot was happening behind it.

The request was a last-minute addition to a long-time client’s project. Their new sister division was launching maple pancake-flavored flour tortillas and needed a short, simple recipe and accompanying image for the back of the package.

My client had no idea what the new product was like. “I’ll have samples sent your way,” she promised.

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Unusual Flour Tortillas

The next day, a big box of tortillas arrived, filling my office with the aroma of maple syrup (not a bad thing!).

I tore open a package to check out the flour tortillas’ color (dark tan) and texture (soft and pliable, cold and heated). I nibble them straight from the package. I warmed up the tortillas and sampled them with a variety of fillings.

It was a unique product, to be sure.

“They definitely channel the flavor/experience of maple pancakes,” I wrote my client. “but they’re not super sweet, so they’d work nicely with savory fillings as well.”

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The Recipe Concepts

I pitched a trio of recipe ideas that would complement the tortillas’ distinct flavor profile and work for a decent photo. All involved just a handful of ingredients and two or three steps because space would be tight.

  • Cheddar-Bacon Quesadillas, garnished with a drizzle of maple-enhanced hot sauce for a spicy-sweet finish. (Spicy-sweet flavors were trending at the time.)
  • Black Forest Ham Wraps with maple-Dijon mustard. These would feature sliced ham, Havarti cheese, lettuce, and tomato.
  • Brown Sugar Peach “Tostadas.” The soft maple-flavored flour tortilla would mimic a pancake, which I’d slather with maple-sweetened cream cheese and top with peaches sauteed in butter and brown sugar. I’d garnish this with a small scoop of vanilla ice cream, a drizzle of maple syrup, and toasted sliced almonds.

The Result

The “tostadas” won the client’s vote.

I was hoping for this because it would be a nice way to showcase the tortillas. The peaches would add a pop of color, and the ice cream would give it good height overall.

“The crew is happy with the tostadas,” my client reported. “SPECTACULAR was a comment 😊.”

Since there would be just one serving on a white plate with a white background, the food needed to look great without the benefit of supporting props.

What was the verdict?

“The crew is happy with the tostadas,” my client reported. “SPECTACULAR was a comment 😊.”

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