The New York Times reports that Chipotle is (literally) in the lab working on a simplified, improved tortilla (made of only four ingredients).
The NYTimes told readers that Chipotle has hit the lab and is on a mission to refine it's tortillas. They want to see if they can mass-market this 'better' tortillas with only four ingredients: whole-wheat flour, salt, water and oil.
Currently the ingredients are flour, water, whole-wheat flour, canola oil, salt, baking soda, wheat bran, fumaric acid, calcium propionate, sorbic acid and sodium metabisulfite.
This could be a game changer. The chain is known for its sustainability, ecoconscience, and transparency could really benefit from this change. The magic is happening inside Washington State University's "The Bread Lab."
According to its website, "the goal of the Bread Lab is to combine science, art, curiosity and innovation to explore ways of using regionally available grains to move the craft of whole grain bread baking and other grain usage forward."
Via the Bread Lab website
The Pacific Northwest will be the test market for the new tortillas. Sorry, every other part of the country. Chipotle plans to roll out the upgrades, region by region, starting around the Bread Lab first.
The new four-ingredient tortillas are sourdough. Apparently, that's the best way to leaven the dough (we're okay with that).
According to First We Feast:
The resident baker of the Bread Lab believes the sourdough will "add the right flavor, make the tortilla dough smoother and give it a longer shelf life."
For now Chipotle will continue to make small test batches and gradually increase the size, putting some supply to small groups of restaurants.
As it continues to show its success, the tortillas supply region will continue to expand. We are looking forward to see where this is headed, Chipotle.