Classic Tamales

Classic Tamales
Servings: 24 Yield: 24 tamales Active Time 1 hr Total Time 1 hr 40 mins

Ingredients

  • 3 cups masa harina
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 cup lard
  • 2 cups reduced sodium chicken broth
  • 24 corn husks

Make It

1. In a large bowl cover corn husks with hot water, weighing them down with a plate to keep submerged. Let stand at least 30 minutes or until corn husks are soft and pliable. Drain well; pat dry with paper towels.

2. In a medium bowl whisk to combine the masa harina, baking powder, cumin, and salt.

3. Using an electric mixer, beat lard until smooth. Add half of flour mixture and beat. Add 1 cup chicken broth and beat until incorporated, scraping down sides when needed. Repeat process with remaining flour mixture and chicken broth. Beat for 5 minutes and cover surface of masa with plastic wrap until ready to use.

4. To assemble tamales: starting at the wide end of a corn husk, spoon 2 slightly rounded Tbs. dough and pat with wet fingers into a 4x3-inch rectangle so that one of the long sides of the dough is at a long edge of the husk. Spoon 1 to 2 Tbs. desired filling down the center of dough. Fold long edge of husk over filling so it brings edges of masa together, covering filling. Overlap long ends of husk; roll around outside of filled dough. Fold narrow end of tamale up; secure with strips of corn husk. Place, folded-side down, on a platter until all are assembled.

5. To steam tamales, add a steamer basket to an 8-qt. pot. Add water to just below the basket. Stand tamales upright in steamer basket. Don't pack too tightly, but fill the space. Bring water to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low. Cover; steam 40 minutes or until dough easily pulls away from corn husks and is spongy and cooked through. Remove tamales from steamer and cool slightly before serving.

Variation

Sweet Masa:
  • Add 1/3 cup dark brown sugar to the masa mixture in step 2. Substitute cinnamon for the cumin, shortening for the lard, and coconut milk for the chicken broth.

Nutrition Facts

Servings Per Recipe: 24; Amount Per Serving: cal. (kcal): 134, Fat, total (g): 9, chol. (mg): 8, sat. fat (g): 3, carb. (g): 12, Monounsaturated fat (g): 4, Polyunsaturated fat (g): 1, Trans fatty acid (g): , fiber (g): 2, sugar (g): , pro. (g): 2, sodium (mg): 174, Potassium (mg): 59, calcium (mg): 39, iron (mg): 1, Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.