Mexican Tamales

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I had taste several kinds of Tamales, cause I like them so much.  Since moving to Texas, were you find such a variety of southamerican fare, I was very curious on how to do a mexican staple, Tamales.  I had read countless recipes from the internet, and look at some videos, but none of then like having an experience tamales cooker teach you first hand.  So that great mexican cooker is Letty, my son`s  mother-in-law, that is visiting from San Luis Potosi, Mexican state.  There are a lot of different types of Tamales, green tamales stuff with ancho chiles, red tamales with pork, sweet tamales (new to me) made with condensed milk, and fruits.  Delicious.  Will talk about sweet Tamales in another post, today is savory Tamales with pork and Guajillos chiles.  One of the two most important ingredient or steps in doing Tamales is  the pork lard…….yes pork lard, and the way you mix the masa.  None recipe will tell you that you have to mix the masa, until your arms fell from your shoulder, literally.  I will, believe me, when I made my first batch of Tamales, folllowing a recipe from the internet, I substitute the lard with oil, and did not mix the masa  enough and they came out to solid and hard.  The pork lard is the key ingredient to make the masa fluffy and spongy.

Ingredients: 

1 package of dried Guajillos Chile, 1 roast onion, 3 roasted garlic, 1/2 spoon cumin, salt, pepper to taste, pork lard,  4 cups of water,

Corn Husk Wrappers:

1 package of corn husk (soak overnight or at least 3 hours before using)

Instant Corn Masa Mix for Tamales

3# or more of instant corn masa mix for Tamales (Maseca), 8 onz. pork lard at room temperature, 4 cups or more beef broth at room temperature, salt, 1 spoon of baking power

For the stuffing:

6# of pork cut in small strips.  One strip of meat for each  Tamal

Procedure:

1. Cook pork until tender in plenty water, with garlic, onions, salt & pepper.  Reserve water for the masa and sauce.

2. For the masa: mix the pork lard by hand or in a mixer until creamy.  Add the masa, beef broth,salt, pepper, baking power and more  water as needed.  Start mixing, until you hear little explosions sounds coming from the masa.  This will take from 20 to 30 minutes.

3. Prepare the Guajillo sauce, clean the chiles from stem and seeds, boil in water until soft.  Reserve water.  Mix the Guajillos chiles, with the roast garlic, onions, salt and part of the reserve water, or beef broth.  This should be a creamy not watery sauce.  Mix the pork with the Guajillo  chile sauce, and star forming the tamales.  See pics.  Enjoy!!!