Official Tamale Hot Line Thread...
These little, wrapped goodies are a labor of LOVE......and FOOD! Let's make this the Tamale Thread. Let's pool our knowledge, tips, tricks, recipes etc, and make for a fun time.
I'm TIRED!!! Made about 110 tamales today. Half I made by myself. These were gifts for my neigbors this year. I delivered 1/2 dozen bags to neighbors in the cul de sac. I've made these when I was a little kid and my grandparents were still around, and I made these when I was still living at home, and now I'm still making em and showing my son the routine. Hopefully, he continues the tradition one day with his kids. My daughter, to small to make em, devoured one. Right now she's an eater, not a maker. LOL!
My dad came over to do some "Quality Control". He gave me a tip......you want to steam them for 30 minutes for each dozen you have in the pot. Keep it to a single layer.(med/high heat) The more layers, the more time. ALso, they don't cook evenly. Once time is up, take lid off the pot and let them air out till they cool off. As they cool, they will firm up.
Don't serve em right outta the pot and hot, cause they will be mushy. They need to air out and cool a bit.
Last tip........see if you can eat fewer than me. I had 8 today. 3 red and 5 green. The green were my favorite.
Enjoy your tamales. They are labor intensive, but not difficult to make. And they are so good. I can't wait for breakfast!!!
Tamales are a tradition in my family (yes I'm Mexican, ssshhhhh don't tell anybody). As a child I remember going to my grandparents house in a small migrant farm town in central California (Cutler) where the family would get together and make tamales for Christmas. The women cooked, the men prepared the masa and the kids played.
Now that my grandparents are gone and I'm a grown man now I decided I wanted to carry on the tradition so now we do tamales at my house and I love it. I never feel more connected with my family than when we're all in the kitchen laughing and telling stories while the assembly line of tamales chugs along. So here's how we roll...
1. You gotta have a few essential ingredients: Masa, your mole (we do pork), and corn husks.
2. It's an assemnbly line from there. Coat the husks in masa, fill with mole, wrap then steam.
3. As mentioned before be sure to let them cool for 5 minutes after heating so they firm up.
This year I'm smoking a pork butt then adding the smoked meat to the mole to see how it goes. Not sure on this one, my mom says it won't work, I say it's worth the $5 butt to see if it will.
Fill husks with mole (I like to add a black olive):
Getting ready to steam:
Steam. I use foil to make a good seal to keep as much steam inside as possible:
Done and resting:
That's it. Google recipes for mole and how to prepare masa, get some friends and family over to your house and have fun. Merry Christmas everybody!
Great recipe/tradition (tradicion)!
I hope I get brave enough to make my own. (I buy them from a lady who owns a mexican lunch counter about 2 miles away. $.50 each).
i remember the first time i saw tamales being made was when i was about 6 years old when my dad was in the air force stationed at brooks in san antonio. we went over to sargent benevides house and made what seemed like a thousand tamales and i ate until i couldn't eat anymore.
i have for years been working on getting the recipe "just right" and really look forward to the information and recipes that come from this thread. i grew up in colorado and really miss having good mexican food readily available. no tamale vendors showing up with their coolers out here in massachusetts!
2 pounds lean boneless pork, or 1 - 3 1/2 pound shoulder butt or loin
4 Tablespoons chili Powder
4 Tablespoons Paprika
2 teaspoons ground comino
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper, ground
2 teaspoons black pepper
1 teaspoon salt
4 cloves garlic, pressed, mashed, or minced
1 cup stock
Cut pork in large 3 to 4" chunks and boil in two quarts of plain water for 45 minutes.
Then remove bones and excess fat.
Put through meat grinder.
Reserve the stock.
Add all the seasoning and 1 cup stock to the ground pork and mix well.
1 pound masa harina (6 cups)
1/2 pound softened lard (1 1/2 cups)
4 teaspoons salt
2 2/3 cups warm stock.
Work lard well into masa by hand or mixer. Add salt, then add the stock, using electric mixer. This will make a thick paste.
Soak 50 to 60 nice corn shucks for several hours in hot water, each trimmed to about 4 X 6 inches. The paste is applied with a table knife to the lower left hand corner of the shuck in an area about 2 X 4 inches and about 1/2 inch in thickness. Then about a Tablespoon of pork mixture is applied along the center of this, like making a cigarette. Then the tamale is rolled up (like a cigarette) and the empty end of the shuck folded up alongside of tamale. This wrapping is done rather loosely to allow for the eventual swelling of the masa when the tamales are steamed. The tamales are put in a steamer, on the steaming tier in bundles of 6 or placed side by side, so as to hold their shape. A canning type pressure cooker is good for the steaming operation, used as a steamer and not as a pressure cooker (just put the lid on and don't seal it). Steam over boiling water 1 hour.
Shuck scraps boiled with the meat increase shuck flavor of tamales. Also shuck scraps in the steaming water are helpful flavorwise and also enhances the aroma of the kitchen.
So I have a defrost bag of carnitas ready but my wife defrosted brisket slices instead of some shredded brisket point I was hoping to use. Should I chop up the slices and mix with some red chile sauce or I also have some thinly sliced prime rib. May get some poblanos and make some green chile and cheese ones too!
Great timing guys. A friend came over last night and we deceided to spend New Years making tamales. Maybe a few livations involved as well. Her mom was in town but is leaving before we can make them so we are on our own. Looking forward to recipes. I think she bought chuck. Any recipes for using chuck?
Bob your daughters got it right.
smoked pulled pork worked just fine here.
for smoked chuck just smoke it until it's pullable or chop it finely.
either way be sure to save your juices for the masa & use in the water when softening the husks.
here's my thread on it. long winded but good.
Don't laugh...I've NEVER had a tamale in my life! :eek:
I know , I can't believe it either!!!
With all the recent threads I MUST do something about this and quickly!!!
Thanks for starting this thred. My parents and 8 siblings are all from El Paso. In fact, every "Adauto" in the phone book is a relative.
My sister, wife and I made 5 dozen green chile, pork and cheese tamales last week. They are in the freezer until tomorrow night when we will steam them. Ours are made very similar to the way you described them. This year, I roasted a 30 pound box of Hatch, NM chilies, so they will be real hot. Can't wait.
Open corn husks or closed corn husks?
I do the full wrap, no open ends for me. Not sure why, or it if makes a difference.
I think you can use any meat, but, it is better pulled or shredded, not cubed, and it should have sauce, dry is easier to roll, but, nowhere near as good.
This is quite timely as next week will be my first attempt to make these. Have a bunch of pulled pork and the whole family is off. Gonna put a dollup of pork on the masa that is on the corn husk and wrap. Hopefully some photo's. Scott
Can I be your neighbor? :lol:
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