Ready in 1 hour
"This tamale recipe is as flexible as you want it to be; add roasted corn kernels, chopped chile, or scallions to the dough if you feel like it. Small bits of seasnoal vegetables such as succhini, pumpkin poblano chiles and even sauteed seitan would make perfect additions, too. You need a large steamer basket for the recipe."
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Place the corn husks in a large pot (no need to separate them just yet). Cover them completely with warm water and allow to soak for at least 20 minutes until husks are soft and pliable. Keep covered in water the entire time the recipe is prepared until ready to use.
Prepare the tamale dough: In a large bowl, combine the masa harina, broth, salt, baking powder and oil. With an electric hand mixer, beat until a dense, moist, luffy dough forms and the side of the bowls are clean. Cover the bowl containing the dough with plastic wrap or a damp towel and set aside.
Prepare the filling:In a large heavy-bottomed skillet, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Saute the onions and garlic for 5 minutes, until softened. Add the pepper and carrot, and saute for 3 minutes, then add beans, corn, broth, chipotles (the mroe chipotles and sauce the hotter) and adobo sauce, tomato paste, and cumin. Saute and simmer until moist of the liquid evaporates, about 5-7 minutes. Salt to taste and allow to cool before assembling tamales.
Depending the size of the corn husks, you will need to use 1 to 2 husks per tamale. There are a billion ways to wrap a tamale;we like this way since it's simple and makes super-cute traditional tamale shapes.
Take a corn husk and lay it flat; spread about 2 tbs of dough off center, leaving a 1 1/2" margin from the top and bottom of the husk. Spread a heaping tbs of filling int he center of the dough, then top with about 1 tbs more of the dough. Carefully roll up the tamale, making sure to completely encase the filing in the corn husk. Tie both ends securely with either heavy-duty kitchen string or simply tear a corn husk lengthwise into thin strips and use that.
Loosely pack the tamales into a large steamer basket. Steam for 35-40 minutes. The tamales will expand and feel firm to the touch when done. Remove from the heat and allow to cool slightly before serving (they will be really hot when unwrapped). Serve with your favorite salsa and guacamole or make a whole extra-steamy affair out of it and serve with sides of rice and beans.
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