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Grandmother’s Tamales Recipe

Grandmother’s Tamales Recipe

Ingredients :

  • °Fresh Corn Diamond, 5 lbs.
  • °1 pound corn husks
  • °1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • °1 teaspoon salt
  • °1 pound lard
  • °5 cups cooked pork broth (drained from cooked pork), set aside and use as needed
  • °8 oz. Anchos chili
  • °5 pounds pork shoulder
  • °3-4 garlic cloves
  • °Half teaspoon ground black pepper
  • °2 teaspoons ground cumin


  • Place the ancho pods in a bowl and cover with boiling water. Leave for 30 minutes or more until soft, then remove stems and seeds and coarsely chop. Keep the soaking fluid.
  • Allow mixture to cool and carefully transfer to a food processor, adding reserved soaking liquid as needed until mixture is smooth. Pour the blended mixture through a fine mesh sieve, transfer to a covered bowl, and refrigerate until ready to use.
  • Prepare the mummiesFill a saucepan with warm water and the corn husks, and soak them overnight. Before you are ready to make the tamales, rinse and dry the peels well, and if they are too wide, cut them in half. Sit aside
  • Pork preparationCut the pork shoulder into small (1-2 inch) pieces. Add garlic, pork chops and spices to a large saucepan. Cover with water and leave to boil over high heat. Reduce heat & simmer for 3 h or to meat is tender. The meat is lifted and minced.
  • Let the meat cool and cool overnight. Reserve pork broth.dayPrepare the diamondBeat 1 pound of lard with a mixer or by hand until light.
  • Add salt and fresh corn. Add chili mixture little by little until it turns a darker pink color, to taste. Beat with a heavy mixer or knead like bread with a little pork broth, until dough is light.
  • The dough is ready when a small amount floats when placed in a glass of water.Preparing the pork fillingHeat some lard in a heavy saucepan.
  • Add 1 cup (or more to your taste) of the mixed chili mixture to the lard and simmer until the sauce thickens slightly. Add some salt to taste. Now add the shredded meat and both and cook for 20 minutes.
  • You may want to add more of the mixed chili mixture to your liking.Fill the corn husksPut some masa in the center of the corn husks. Using the back of a spoon, spread the bottom 2/3 of the corn husks evenly over the edges.
  • Put a lot of pork in the middle. Fold the side of the corn husks toward the center, overlapping. Now fold the top (without the diamond) down and set it aside on a plate until ready to cook.
  • Continue these steps until all of the masa and ham filling is used.Steam TamalesBring 3-4 cups of reserved pork broth to a boil in a saucepan.
  • Place the tamales, folded side down, into the steamer, standing upright. Cover the tamales with damp corn husks and a clean, damp dish towel.
  • Put the lid on the steamer and let it steam for 1 hour or until the dough can peel easily.
  • Add more broth as needed to continue steaming, being careful not to spill the broth over the tamales.
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