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New Mexican Pork Tamales
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    New Mexican Pork Tamales

  • 1 1/2 lbs. pork loin or other tender, lean cut, fat removed
  • 1 med. white onion, chopped
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 Tbsp. canola oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 Tbsp. flour
  • 1/2 cup dried ground NuMex chile
  • 3/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. cumin
  • 1/8 tsp. oregano
  • 1 6 oz. pkg dried corn husks
  • 6 cups masa harina
  • 2 cups oil
  • 2 Tbsp. salt
  • 4 1/2 cups water or more as needed
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place pork and onion in medium baking dish and cover with water. Bake for approximately 1-1/2 hours or until meat pulls apart easily. Remove pork from broth. Refrigerate broth. When cool, shred meat with 2 forks or with dough blade of food processor. Strain broth after fat has solidified on surface. (All of this can be done the day before.) If the broth doesn't measure 2 cups, add water to make 2 cups of liquid. Reserve pork and liquid.

    In large skillet, heat oil, add minced garlic and pork. Sprinkle flour over mixture and stir constantly for about a minute as the flour begins to brown. Add ground chile, broth and seasonings. Cook over medium-low heat until thickened and almost dry, stirring regularly, for about 30 minutes. Remove from heat.

    Prepare corn husks by submerging in bowl or baking pan of hot water for 30 min. Separate husks and rinse them under warm running water to wash away any grit or brown silks. Soak them in warm water until ready to use.

    Prepare masa. Measure masa harina in large bowl. Add water, while stirring. Add oil and salt and stir well. Use spoon, powerful mixer, or your hands. When well blended it should have the consistency of moist cookie dough. If it begins to dry out, add more water. Cover with damp cloth if necessary.

    Assemble tamales. Spread dough on smooth side of husk with back of spoon to about 1/2" from side edges, 1" from top edge, and 2" from bottom edge. Spoon about 2 tablespoons of filling down center. Roll husk over so that masa covers filling and should come loose from husk. Then roll up husk and fold bottom end under. Repeat until all masa and filling is used. Stand tamales loosely packed in a steamer/blancher/spaghetti cooker, or lay flat in a criss cross pattern so steam can penetrate effectively. Cover pot and steam for about 1 hr. to 1-1/4 hrs or until the masa is firm and pulls away from husk easily.

    Serve tamales warm. Let each person remove his own husks. May be topped with green chile sauce, chili con carne, or cheese and onions if desired.

    I have several tamale recipes, including chicken tamales, on my home page: Flavors of the South, Mexican and Southwestern Recipes. There is a tutorial on how to make Tamales Nortenos, complete with photos, at Garry Howard's Home Cookin' Tamale page.

    From: Santa Fe Cooking School - Hot and Spicy Cuisine Article
    Posted By:Judy Howle, ViaVia: Chile Head Mailing List
    Post Date: July 17, 1998



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