October is squash season and our good friends at 5 Star Makeover Cooking Group made it this month’s challenge.
I am adapting a recipe from Chef George Duran and decided on tamales as it would be really a challenge for me. Years ago when I worked for the Mexican Tourist Office here in New York I was able to travel many times to beautiful and exiting Mexico. I ate the food, drank their tequila and fell in love with it’s people .
Outside of Tacos al Pastor (on my bucket list to make) is the tamal. I will incorporate in this month’s challenge the mighty pumpkin. Usually tamales are savory, but these will be sweet.
about 40 dried corn husks
3-1/2 cups Maseca corn flour
1 cup packed brown sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. ginger
1/2 tsp. ground cloves
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1 29-ounce can of pumpkin purée
2 sticks of butter, melted
1+ cup of warm water
1 cup of walnuts, chopped (I used toasted hazel nuts)
1 cup of raisins
Queso Fresco, shredded for garnish.
Fill a large bowl with hot water and soak corn husks until softened for about 30 minutes.
In an extra-large bowl add Maseca corn flour and the rest of the dry ingredients. Mix together making sure that all of the clumps are broken up with your fingers. Then add all the wet ingredients and once again, use your hands to mix the corn flour. Add more water as needed until you achieve the consistency of peanut butter. Fold in the nuts and raisins.
Assemble the tamales by using a rubber spatula to spread ½ cup to 1 cup of dough mixture onto the corn husk, depending on the size of the corn husk. The spread should cover about two-thirds of the husk, away from the pointed end, making sure you leave some space on each side to fold. Gently fold one side of the corn husk to the other end and fold up the pointed end across. Lay each tamal fold-side down. There should be an open end to each tamal.
I do not own a Tamalera pot so I used an inverted strainer that fits on bottom of large pot and add about 2-3 inches of water. Stack the tamales straight up and steam with the lid on for about 90 minutes.
Remove each tamal with tongs and let rest for a few minutes before serving it as a sweet side-dish or grated with queso fresco.
This post really gets me in the tamale and holiday spirit!!! Nice job Norma!!!
hahaha … I love the tamale song, so fun! Nice job on the challenge and the post. I love the idea of pumpkin tamales and could see it as a side dish on a Thanksgiving table. Muy bien hecho, amiga!
You are always the first to comment and it is always appreciated.
What a wonderful idea. I would have never thought of it, but I can see the flavors all coming together. Bravo to you.
It was a challenge to myself that worked out pretty well, I just wish it was my original idea….
Hi Norma ~ super idea for the challenge. They sound muy delicioso! And that lead shot is just beautiful with the husks/ light/ and pumpkin…Brava!
P.S. Love the finish with queso fresco too!
Thanks Lori it means a lot coming from you.
I’ve always wanted to make tamales so I guess this is a good time to start. I think these sound so yummy and your photo is beautiful. Love how you used the pumpkin for this makeover. Great job!
Vicky: I never made them thinking it was hard, but it was pretty easy…thanks for stopping by!
OMG, Norma. OMG. I’ve had many a tamal in my life in Mexico, but have never had pumpkin! These look divine. I am positively drooling.
I thought it was my idea but when I googled Chef beat me to it…
These look so cool, I would love to taste them. I like the rainbow sugar you used. Tamales are a favorite in our house.
Thans so much. The rinbow sugar I got a Home Goods, my now new favorite hangout….
Me encantan los tamales!!! Nunca los habia visto de calabaza!! Woowww! Tremenda idea!!!
Gracias Glory…agradesco tu visita…
Wow, these tamales look out of this world delicious! I really love the idea of using pumpkins in them. Marvelous!
Thanks Angie…will be stopping by soon..
Lovely Norma! Thanks for the step by step instructions! 🙂
Celia you are just too kind..
Me encantó Norma…!!! Qué buena propuesta el ponerle calabaza, estupendo, y te quedaron de maravilla.
Gracias Nydia…espero que estes bien…te visitare pronto..he tenido muchas cosas pendientes y no he podido visitar…
Such a beautiful pumpkin dish! Your tamales sound so flavorful, Norma.
Thanks so much Faith…they were pretty good….
I love the idea of sweet tamales – very unique! Such wonderful flavors with all the spices that you used.
Its like a pumpkin pie…
What a great job, I never dared to try tamales. And I have never seen a sweet version. I just love it and want to try one.
They are really easy to make and worth it…
This looks like a delicious dish. I would love to try it. Blessings dear. Catherine xo
Thank you so much Catherine.
That’s a five star makeover if I’ve seen one – awesome 😀
Choc Chip Uru
You are just too kind!
very cool! i’ve only had one real tamal, but it does make me want more… loving the sweet version you’ve created here 🙂
This looks marvelous! Festive + Fun + Delicious! and what a great package =)
Anda pal cará… these look AMAZING! Love this creative spin on tamales – they also remind me of Ecuadorean humitas, which are usually enjoyed with the afternoon coffee. Saludos y besos!
Riendome…gracias por tu comentario
Yay for pumpkin! These sound addictively delicious!
They were…All the workers in my building had them…
Wow!Would love to taste this. I love the tamale song. LOL!
You are just too sweet…
Those tamales looks delicious,Norma! What a great idea! You can’t go wrong with tamales 🙂
hanks Erica..they were good!
I am in love with this idea. Great job! I want one!
Thank you so much…
holy cow, these sound so good. I want some. I just have to find the corn husks here. That might be a challenge. 🙂
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Do I know you and why did you post your blog on my blog….
Those photos are just gorgeous. I love the way the corn husks look… like full petticoats in your perfect photos. Recipe looks terribly good. I love squash~
Cominf from you it is a compliment…thank you so much..
What a great idea to make a sweet tamale…I’m sure they were delicious.
They were Karen, I feed the building…LOL
Tamales, what a great idea for this month’s makeover! So much love goes into the process of tamale making (and eating)!
Aparte de la recetas, tus fotografias son tambien maravillosas. Eres muy creativa.
Love everything sweet!
Thanks for sharing.
Yes that would do it. Too much pumpkin and too many hours
Forgot to ask. Can they be spread and wrapped on aluminum paper?
I would think so because I know beople that use the foil. Thanks for the support which I greatly appreciate it….
How gorgeous Norma. I might see you soon……..! I’ll email. Lots of love.
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I’m having trouble with the consistency of the finished Tamal. It seems like its not cooking thoroughly. But my end results looks very similar to the photo above. Do the Tamal’s completely dry or do they remain somewhat mushy?
They were not mushy but pretty firm consistency. Maybe you should cook it for a while longer. I feel terrible because I pigged out with mine. Let me know.
Thanks for replying. I cooked mine for 6 long hours! I must admit I added an extra 1/2 can of pumpkin to the recipe. Could that be the cause of my mushy (under cooked) Tamal’s?
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Ingenious recipe. I would never have thought to make a sweet, pumpkin tamale! I bet these are so addicting! You are going to start a new, nation-wide trend when pumpkin comes around again next Fall. Best – Shanna