Tamale Making ~ How to Make GOOD, EASY & QUICK tamales -





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Published on Nov 19, 2011

I was obsessed over tamales because

1) tamales I buy at store or order in restaurants greatly disappoint me.
2) I liked the challenge of creating something that is suppose to be time consuming and making it as efficient as possible.

So my tamale quest began. I took a class once on tamale making - it was a big bummer because the instructor wasn't so great. Next, I tried for MANY years to get 'in' with a tamale making family - could never penetrate that inner circle - I guess I was too over-zealous in my approach... sigh... then last year researched tamale making online for WEEKS. Read lots of tips, watched lots of videos. The result - a two day exhaustive process that left me with sad skinny tamales...

I'm very goal oriented and if I really, REALLY want to do something - I will get it!

So this year - after analyzing it a LOT - here's what I came up with. This is the best of the best!!! When I had my sister's friend taste one of these tamales - I got a big thumbs up and now this is how her tamale making crew will make them (yes, I could not even get into her tamale making group)...but she is adopting my tips! :)

So here you go - good luck! Its really not THAT hard. This recipe will yield you 12 fat filled carnitas tamales and will take you about 1 hour from masa mixing to getting it into the steamer - and then another 1 hour for the steaming process. I recently doubled the batch and it only extended my filling/wrapping time by 1/2 hour (so 1.5 hours + 1 hr steam time)...if you want to do it quicker - recruit some help - I did this by myself in this time.

Masa - follow the recipe on the pkg. (use warm chicken broth for the liquid)
**this is enough for 12 FAT tamales - double the recipe if you use a 2lb pkg of carnitas.

1 box of Lard (you won't use the entire box - again follow the recipe on the Masa pkg)

Premade carnitas - you can get this at the grocery store - buy the 2lb pkg - cuz you know you'll want more than 12!
1lb = 12 tamales

1 small can of green chiles
1 jar of green verde salsa
1 pkg of presliced pepper jack cheese (stack and slice in strips - I just cut them in 1/2)

1) Boil a big pot of water - boil the corn husks rather than soaking them over night. This really made my germ-o-phobe sister happy that I sterilized the husks - I really did it because I forgot to soak the corn husks and found I could do this part while mixing the masa!

2) Make sure you pay attention to which side of the corn husk you are putting the masa on - smooth side (not the ridge side) if you do the wrong side - it will be hard to remove the tamale from the husk when you eat it.

3) Make sure you don't let the water evaporate in the steaming pot - you could burn your tamales and your hard work is ruined! (not that I know from experience...) ; )

4) Don't promise your tamales to a lot of people... these are golden...my husband was doing a count because the first batch was gone by day 2! LOL!

Have fun!!!!!


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