Baking Crazy

I don’t know what came over me last weekend.  I went totally baking crazy!  I have a lot of nervous energy right now and with Dan out of town I felt the need to be productive around the house.  Some recipes were successful, some were not.  Let’s start with the one that did not succeed.  My Tamales.

I love tamales.  My old roommate used to make the best veggie tamales and I’ve craved them ever since so I decided to try my hand at them this weekend.  Andrea came over for the adventure and some trashy TV.

My day started out with an on foot adventure.  I was certain that I saw corn husks for sale at a nearby grocery store and after I struck out twice I went out to my final two spots, King Soopers and Whole Foods.  I finally found the corn husks on the last aisle of the last store I visited.  Win! 

I was feeling really successful and started soaking the corn husks around 3pm.
The filling was really easy to put together and Andrea got to spreading the filling on the soaked husks at around 5pm.  Dan and I don’t own a steamer and I made a critical mistake here.  I placed one pot on top of another pot that was filled with water.  This is a double boiler, a steamer needs to have holes in it.  (I did not realize this mistake until today)

It was about 6pm when we turned on the heat for the tamales.  We set the timer for 2 hours.  At 8pm we checked in on the tamales and they were still uncooked dough.  They didn’t change much at 9pm, at 10pm Andrea gave up and I hope went out to do something more fun than watching a pot boiling.  They were close enough to done at around midnight when I removed them from the heat.  (good thing we had so many other treats to snack on!)

Pretty solid!  They stuck to the husk more than I had hoped.
But they are so tasty!

It’s more of a scraping them off the husk than picking them up individually.

But they taste just as I remember!  Yum!

Pepper Tamales
2 cup Maseca 
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking powder
2 cup chicken broth
2/3 cup shortening
water (as needed)
1 pepper
cheese (to taste)

Place all of the dry ingredients in a mixer and mix until combined.  Add the two cups of chicken broth slowly until it is all combined.  Once the chicken broth is combined add the shortening.  At this point I added water to the mixture until it resembled cake batter.  This is when I added the chopped peppers.

We took big spoonfuls of the batter and spread it on the corn husk leaving space at the bottom and about 2 inches on the left side of the husk.  Then we added the cheese and folded the right side of the husk all the way to the end of the batter and fold the un-battered part over.  Also fold up the tip of the husk.  Place in the tamales with the open side up in the steamer.  Fill the steamer completely with tamales and empty husks.

Fill the bottom pot with 2-4 cups of water and place a few pennies in the pot so that you can hear the rattling stop when the water runs low.(this happened quite a lot to us!)  Set the timer for 1-2 hours and place a well sealing lid on top.

Nutritionals (per tamale): Cals: 76, Fat: 5, Carb: 6, Fiber: 1, Protein: 1