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masa

Pronunciation: [MAH-sah ah-REE-nah]

Spanish for "dough," masa is the traditional dough used to make corn tortillas. It's made with sun- or fire-dried corn kernels that have been cooked in limewater (water mixed with calcium oxide). After having been cooked, then soaked in the limewater overnight, the wet corn is ground into masa. Masa harina (literally "dough flour") is flour made from dried masa.