It was during this time that ancient Aztecs began making tortillas. The Aztecs discovered that ashes from cooking fires mixed with water created an alkaline lime mixture that softened, partially dissolved, and helped remove the kernel’s tough outer skin, making corn easier to cook and make into masa (dough). Thus began the process now known as nixtamalization.
That process remained the same for another 5,000 years. Centuries later in 1949, Mr. Roberto González Barrera, founder of GRUMA, modernized the nixtamalization process to make corn masa flour… and the first corn masa flour brand in Mexico was born: MASECA. Today, corn masa flour has changed food preparation habits in Mexico and Central America, making the preparation of tortillas and other corn-based dishes easier and more hygienic. These advantages over traditional preparation methods led to the gradual but steady growth of a company that today leads the world in the manufacture of corn masa flour.