Rolled Stuffed Tortillas (Papadzules)

default recipe image
From El Restaurante Mexicano Magazine.  Papadzules is actually a simple Mayan dish of warmed tortillas served with a pumpkin seed sauce flavored with epazote. Diana Kennedy recommends that only the freshest pumpkin seeds be used to avoid a bitter flavor in the sauce.
  • PrepN/A |
  • TotalN/A |
  • Serves 4 - 6


    • 1 white onion, peeled and quartered
    • 3 cloves garlic, peeled and halved
    • 1 habanero or jalapeño chile, seeded and sliced
    • 3 sprigs fresh epazote or cilantro
    • 4 cups water
    • 12 small (4 to 5-in.) corn tortillas
    • 6 hard-cooked eggs, chopped
    • 2 cups Cebollas Encurtidas (pickled onions)
  • The Chiltomate:
    • 1 or 2 fresh habanero jalapeño chiles
    • 1 large white onion, unpeeled, halved
    • 5 or 6 medium-size, firm ripe tomatoes, 12 plum tomatoes, unpeeled, halved
    • 2 or 3 cloves garlic, peeled and halved
    • 3 tablespoons lard, preferably home-rendered, or vegetable oil
    • 1-1/2 teaspoon minced fresh Mexican oregano (or 1/2 t. dried
    • 1 cloves garlic, peeled and halved
    • 1 tablespoon minced fresh cilantro
    • Salt, to taste
  • The Recado de Pepita:
    • 2-1/2 cups hulled, raw pumpkin seeds (pepitas)


Place quartered onion, garlic, chile and epazote in saucepan, and add the water. Bring to boil over high heat. Reduce heat to low and simmer about 15 minutes, until water is well seasoned.

Strain liquid into large measuring cup, discarding vegetables and seasonings. Let cool slightly, then stir 2 to 3 tablespoons of seasoned water into Recado de Pepita

When mixture is cool enough to handle, squeeze through your fingers until seeds release some of their oil. Spoon oil into a small bowl and set aside.

Gradually whisk more of seasoned water into the recado mixture, until the sauce has the consistency of pancake batter. Keep sauce warm in top of a double boiler over simmering water. Stir occasionally and do not let it boil or it will curdle.

Prepare homemade tortillas and keep warm in tortilla basket; or wrap packaged tortillas in foil and warm in a 350-degree oven for a few minutes.

To prepare the papadzules

Pour 1/3 of the warm pumpkin seed sauce into a skillet. Dip hot tortillas, one by one, into the sauce in the skillet. Place heaping tablespoon of egg on each tortilla and roll it up like an enchilada.

Place 2 or 3 papadzules on individual warmed plates. Cover them with warm pumpkin seed sauce and top with hot chiltomate. Drizzle with reserved pumpkin seed oil and garnish with cebollas.

Place completed dishes in warm oven until all are assembled. Then serve immediately, garnished with cilantro (if using).


The Recado de Pepita
Place hulled seeds in large skillet over medium-low heat. Toast for 5 to 7 minutes, stirring frequently, until they begin to puff and make popping noises. While still hot, place seeds in blender or food processor and pulse on and off until they are so finely ground they almost form a paste.
Press ground seeds through medium mesh sieve into a bowl. Return unground portions to blender and pulse again until finely ground; pass through the sieve again. If not using immediately, place in airtight container and refrigerate. It should keep several weeks.


Preheat grill, steel comal, or large, heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Roast vegetables and garlic for 6 to 8 minutes, turning with tongs to brown all sides. Peel chile and discard stem and seeds.

Peel and dice onion, tomatoes and garlic. Place roasted ingredients and oregano in mortar or blender or food processor, and grind or chop to desired consistency.

Melt lard in large skillet over medium-high heat. Add salsa and sauté 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in oregano and cilantro, and season to taste with salt. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Additional Notes

Recado de Pepita (pumpkin seed sauce, below)
Chiltomate (cooked tomato and chile salsa, below), warmed
Fresh cilantro sprigs, for garnish (optional)
Recipes From - The Gourmet Food And Cooking Resource