Watch Cooking Channel

How To Make Fresh Corn Tamales

Tamales Recipe

I was determined to make tamales this summer but kept hearing that the corn piling up at the markets wasn’t the “right” kind. Sweet and bursting maybe, but not the starchy field corn needed to make traditional tamales. Though they can be made year round using cornmeal, masa harina or tamal flour specially made for the purpose, it seemed a shame to make the same tamales in July that I could have in December.

I was about to go the all-maseca route when I tried a Guatemalan tamal from a street vendor. Sweet, airy and topped only with crema and fresh cheese, it had the delicate flavor of the white summer corn crowding the farm stands. Known as tamales de elote in Mexico and Central America, humitas in the Andes, and green corn tamales in the States, these fresh corn tamales could be made with domestic corn and just a small amount of masa harina to approximate the taste and texture of starchier varieties. Though savory fillings can be added like shredded pork or chicken, they’re wonderful just on their own blended with fast melting cheese like Oaxaca or Monterey Jack and green onions. With every part of the corn, from the husks to the kernels to the cobs, imparting their own shades of flavor, you can savor everything the season has to offer while it lasts.

Tamales Recipe

Though fresh field or dent corn works best, white or bi-color sweet corn can be used. Choose corn that’s heavy for its size with bright green husks that still retain some moisture. The kernels should be plump and tightly spaced with no brown spots. Using a heavy knife, cut the corn as close to the base as possible so that the husks pull away easily without tearing. As you shuck the corn, sort the husks by size for later use – the coarse outer leavers to line the bottom of the steamer, the wide inner leaves with the curved bottoms to wrap the tamales, and the thin leaves closest to the kernels to cut into strips and tie the tamales.

Tamales Recipe

Working in batches, blanch the husks in a pot of simmering water for about one minute to make them pliable and easier to work with. Remove from the water, drain and set aside until ready to use.

Tamales Recipe

Remove the silks from the corn and discard. Using a sharp knife, cut the kernels from the cob from top to bottom and gather the kernels with their juices in a large bowl. Use the back of a knife or grater to scrape the residual corn from the cobs. Repeat with the remaining corn. Using a food processor or blender, pulse the corn until it forms a thick puree. As an alternative, the corn can be ground by hand with a cheese grater set over a mixing bowl. Reserve the cobs for later use.

Tamales Recipe

Ingredients and seasonings vary, but fresh corn tamales are typically a mixture of fats (freshly rendered lard, vegetable oil, melted butter or a combination thereof), liquid (broth, milk or water), leavening (baking powder or baking soda), and seasonings (salt and sometimes sugar, cinnamon or aniseed). Because corn in the United States is sweeter and has a higher water content, masa harina or tamal flour is added to give it the right flavor and texture (both are widely distributed by Maseca). Starting with a 1/2 cup, add the tamal flour a little at a time until the dough is thick and creamy but is no longer runny and can hold its shape in a mound. Peppers, onions, grated cheese, beans, cooked chicken or pork can either be blended into the dough or tucked into the tamales as they’re being wrapped.

Tamales Recipe

To wrap the tamales, lay down the widest interior husks with the curved bottom closest to you. Add 1-2 heaping tablespoons of the dough to the center of the husk towards the curved end. The tamales will expand in the steamer so leave at least 1” border around the dough. If using a filling, add a spoonful to the center of the dough. Fold the sides of the corn husk over the tamal to form a rectangle. Fold the pointed end of the husk up and over the bottom half to form a package. Tie the tamal with the reserved husks cut into thin strips or kitchen string. The curved top can remain open but the sides should be well sealed to avoid leakage.

Tamales Recipe

Wrapping tamales can be tricky at first but you soon get the hang of how to tuck and fold in the dough. To make bigger tamales or just to give yourself more room to work, lay down two husks with the sides overlapping to create a larger wrapper.

Tamales Recipe

Tamales Recipe

Line the bottom of a large stock pot with reserved cobs. Add enough water to almost but not quite submerge the cobs. Cover the cobs with a layer of the dark, coarse husks. The tamales should not come in contact with the water so they don’t get soggy.

Tamales Recipe

Add tamales to the pot with the open seam up. Cover the tamales with the remaining, unused husks. Cover tightly with a lid and set to a gentle boil over medium heat until the tamales are firm, 20-30 minutes. The cooked tamales should pull away easily from the wrapper.

Tamales Recipe

While the tamales cook, you should be able to hear the water simmering. Add warm water to the pot as needed if it dries out. If you’re using a steamer rack instead of the cobs, drop a nickel into the bottom of the pot before layering the rack with husks. If the water evaporates, the nickel will rattle and let you know to add more water.

Tamales Recipe

Serve hot on its own or topped with Mexican crema, salsa verde or other fresh salsa and crumbled cheese.

Tamales Recipe

More Recipes From Ana Sofia:

Tags:

Comments (2751)

  1. Live In Nanny posted 11/15/2012

    Gems form the internet…

    [...]very few websites that happen to be detailed below, from our point of view are undoubtedly well worth checking out[...]……

  2. football helmet stickers posted 11/15/2012

    Related……

    [...]just beneath, are numerous totally not related sites to ours, however, they are surely worth going over[...]……

  3. whole body cleanse does work posted 11/15/2012

    Awesome website…

    [...]the time to read or visit the content or sites we have linked to below the[...]……

  4. desktop todo list posted 11/15/2012

    Related……

    [...]just beneath, are numerous totally not related sites to ours, however, they are surely worth going over[...]……

  5. Arkadaslik posted 11/16/2012

    superb web page…

    Generally A spouse in addition to i actually won’t likely read devote about web-sites, however My own, personal spouse and innovative, i was explain using this write-up extremely compelled myself consider and what’s more perform consequently! The man…

  6. umow sie na randke posted 11/16/2012

    The Silent Shard…

    This will likely in all probability be rather helpful for a few within your job opportunities I plan to don’t only with my blog but…

  7. this specific somewhat amazing delivering….

    Stick with handful of good function, That great spouse as well as i understand numerous website content concerning this process subject internet site additionally my very own opinion blog is really real interesting as well as holds sectors are essentia…

  8. SEO Services Australia posted 11/17/2012

    Cool Blog…

    This is just one amazing blog article. Truly thank you! Will certainly read on……

  9. the results posted 11/19/2012

    fantastic write-up…

    I’d equally should say that just about all folks who have problems with the with no healthcare might be children, self-employed the techniques who’re really often laid-off. Over 50 percent within the uninsured are the simple truth is under get old gr…

  10. by simply Bing posted 11/20/2012

    Wonderful Webpage…

    I reached feel so content to comprehend that. This is between the type pertaining to information to get presented rather than the random fake information that’s for almost any different web webpages. Obtain total fulfillment via designs providing whic…

  11. grotlopt posted 11/22/2012

    Recent Blogroll Additions……

    [...]usually posts some very interesting stuff like this. If you’re new to this site[...]……

  12. bgdfgdfgdfgdf posted 11/23/2012

    Title…

    [...]usually posts some extremely fascinating stuff like this. If you’re new to this site[...]…

  13. Belk posted 11/23/2012

    remarkable place tactic upward…

    I’ve also always been looking by means of regarding somewhat regarding high-quality posts in conjunction with blog articles or reviews such kind of home. Checking out therefore there inside Hotmail My own lover and great spouse as well as i in summary …

  14. direct investment spectrum posted 11/24/2012

    The Silent Shard…

    This tends to in all probability be really handy for some of your positions I intend to really don’t only with my blog but…

  15. Johnny Bobeck posted 11/25/2012

    The Silent Shard…

    This tends to possibly be quite helpful for some of one’s work I want to don’t only with my web site but…

  16. IT posted 11/25/2012

    Title…

    [...]Wonderful story, reckoned we could combine a number of unrelated information, nevertheless genuinely worth taking a search, whoa did a single understand about Mid East has got much more problerms as well [...]…

  17. haccp zachodniopomorskie posted 11/25/2012

    Title…

    [...]Here is an excellent Weblog You might Obtain Interesting that we Encourage You[...]…

  18. lecteur carte vitale posted 11/25/2012

    Title…

    [...]very handful of internet sites that transpire to become in depth beneath, from our point of view are undoubtedly properly worth checking out[...]…

  19. a fantastic read posted 11/26/2012

    Title…

    [...]one of our visitors not long ago proposed the following website[...]…

  20. "??? ????? ????" posted 11/26/2012

    Title…

    [...]that could be the finish of this report. Right here you will obtain some web-sites that we assume you’ll value, just click the links over[...]…

  21. Dumpster posted 11/26/2012

    Title…

    [...]although sites we backlink to beneath are considerably not related to ours, we really feel they’re actually worth a go as a result of, so possess a look[...]…

  22. Title…

    [...]Every the moment inside a even though we decide on blogs that we study. Listed below are the newest web-sites that we decide on [...]…

  23. air quality testing posted 11/26/2012

    Title…

    [...]one of our guests recently suggested the following website[...]…

  24. Allevamenti Rottweiler posted 11/26/2012

    Title…

    [...]that would be the end of this post. Right here you will discover some web-sites that we consider you’ll appreciate, just click the hyperlinks over[...]…

  25. ecologia posted 11/26/2012

    Title…

    [...]Wonderful story, reckoned we could combine a few unrelated data, nevertheless truly worth taking a appear, whoa did 1 master about Mid East has got a lot more problerms at the same time [...]…

  26. weight loss diet posted 11/27/2012

    Title…

    [...]the time to read or stop by the content or websites we have linked to below the[...]…

  27. hgrtvilo posted 11/27/2012

    Websites worth visiting…

    [...]here are some links to sites that we link to because we think they are worth visiting[...]……

  28. free annual credit report posted 11/27/2012

    Title…

    [...]we came across a cool website that you may well appreciate. Take a appear if you want[...]…

  29. logo quiz posted 11/28/2012

    Title…

    [...]below you will discover the link to some web sites that we consider you ought to visit[...]…

  30. samsung galaxy s 3 posted 11/28/2012

    Title…

    [...]although internet websites we backlink to below are considerably not associated to ours, we really feel they may be really worth a go as a result of, so possess a look[...]…

  31. look what I discovered posted 11/28/2012

    Wonderful Weblog web web page…

    You could find your self being my belief, My partner in addition to i possess selection of blogs in addition to infrequently completed the conclusion via to produce….

  32. Organo Gold Scam posted 11/28/2012

    Title…

    [...]the time to study or take a look at the material or web pages we have linked to below the[...]…

  33. cheap car insurance posted 11/28/2012

    Title…

    [...]that is the end of this report. Right here you will obtain some websites that we assume you will value, just click the hyperlinks over[...]…

  34. ldlhdlcholesterollevels.org posted 11/29/2012

    Title…

    [...]always a large fan of linking to bloggers that I enjoy but don’t get a lot of link love from[...]…

  35. HD Wide Screen posted 11/29/2012

    Title…

    [...]Every as soon as inside a when we pick out blogs that we read. Listed below would be the latest internet sites that we pick [...]…

  36. Marketing a Medical Practice posted 11/29/2012

    Title…

    [...]The data mentioned inside the write-up are a number of the most beneficial offered [...]…

  37. auto accident boardman posted 11/29/2012

    Title…

    [...]Every when in a even though we opt for blogs that we read. Listed beneath are the most recent web-sites that we pick [...]…

  38. hot videos posted 11/29/2012

    Title…

    [...]please go to the web pages we adhere to, which includes this a single, because it represents our picks in the web[...]…

  39. lida satis posted 11/30/2012

    Title…

    [...]Here are a number of the web pages we recommend for our visitors[...]…

  40. vakantie oostenrijk posted 12/01/2012

    Title…

    [...]just beneath, are a lot of entirely not connected internet sites to ours, nonetheless, they are certainly really worth going over[...]…

  41. wellness posted 12/01/2012

    Title…

    [...]we came across a cool web page that you simply may well love. Take a appear in the event you want[...]…

  42. free music downloadeer posted 12/01/2012

    free music downloadeer…

    [...]that may be the finish of this post. Right here you?ll find some websites that we feel you will appreciate, just click the hyperlinks over[...]…

  43. how to get a merchant account posted 12/01/2012

    Blogs ou should be reading…

    [...]Here is a Great Blog You Might Find Interesting that we Encourage You[...]……

  44. Sources…

    [...]check below, are some totally unrelated websites to ours, however, they are most trustworthy sources that we use[...]……

  45. Sunglasses posted 12/01/2012

    Sunglasses…

    [...]always a huge fan of linking to bloggers that I really like but really don’t get quite a bit of link enjoy from[...]…

  46. are banners broker posted 12/02/2012

    Title…

    [...]Every as soon as in a though we pick blogs that we read. Listed beneath are the most current internet sites that we pick [...]…

  47. final cut pro training posted 12/02/2012

    Links…

    [...]Sites of interest we have a link to[...]……

  48. Small Business Tips posted 12/02/2012

    Title…

    [...]the time to study or take a look at the subject material or web sites we’ve linked to below the[...]…

  49. Awesome website…

    [...]the time to read or visit the content or sites we have linked to below the[...]……

  50. market research consulting posted 12/02/2012

    Sites we Like……

    [...] Every once in a while we choose blogs that we read. Listed below are the latest sites that we choose [...]……

Post a New Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.

c