I hope everyone had a great Cinco de Mayo yesterday! Mmmmmmm, Mexican food – my favorite of all cuisines, yet I still don’t cook that much of it because here in Los Angeles, great Mexican food at a great price is so easy to come by. Yesterday, though, I was inspired by the fresh corn that is now in season, so I decided to try my hand at tamale making – starting with an easy non-filled tamale: the Sweet Corn Tamale! I used Rick Bayless’ recipe from his website – click here for the recipe. Chef Bayless won on Top Chef Masters with this recipe.
I was not disappointed with these tamales. I opted not to fill with cheese and poblanos because I just wanted to get the tamale part down first. I used some fresh corn husks, but mostly dried husks since they were larger pieces – they both tasted the same to me. The only mistake I made was that I overcooked the tamales just a bit. The recipe says to steam them until the tamales come free from the husks – I checked after about 50 minutes and they were coming free from the husks, but still seemed mushy – this is when I should have removed them from the heat. As they cool, they firm up quite a bit – mine weren’t dry, but they could have been more moist – the flavor though, was delicious. I used a collapsible steamer in my dutch oven to steam these babies – you can also steam them standing upright in a large stockpot. Do not be intimidated by the process of tamale making – these were not that labor intensive at all! Also, these can easily be a vegan dish with the use of Spectrum in place of the butter!
And for a condiment: grilled tomatillo salsa – – grilled tomatillos, grilled jalapeno, some onions, cilantro, and salt – the spiciness of the salsa went great with the sweet tamales. And for a new side dish to try…..how about Arroz Verde from Fine Cooking.com. This recipe got such rave reviews that I had to try it. It was incredibly flavorful and a nice change from the standard red rice. This is the first time in over a year that I have cooked rice outside of a rice cooker and that was a mistake, because the texture was a bit mushy for me. Next time I will make this in the rice cooker. All in all, a great Cinco de Mayo meal. Now I can’t wait to make filled tamales!
Delicious on the 5th and again on the 6th of de Mayo. Excellent job Tiny Cook.
we LOVED the green rice. SO good. i’m scared to do the tamales (loser.) maybe i’ll try eventually…. 🙂
So glad you loved the rice!