Street foods are loved by everyone no matter from which class you belong. They are relatively cheaper, which is why they are considered economical. If you are a foodie person, you must have heard of tamales. Tamales originated from the region of Mexico. They are now a symbol of Mexican street food. Mexican mothers love to prepare it as a staple. On special days like independence day or any other national day, these are made part of celebrations. Different variations of tamales have been discovered since 5000 BCE. Its name originated from the Nahuatl word tamale, which means ‘wrapped.’ There are some other names of tamales (for instance, zacahuil); this is because it has an ancient origin.
They are mostly considered breakfast food, but vendors will sell them at noon and night. In Mexico, the popularity of tamales is also observed in the Philippines, the Caribbean, Latin America, and the United States of America. Surprisingly, it is the favorite dish of Michelle Obama. You can eat it properly with a knife and a fork while served on a plate.
What are tamales?
Corn dough is traditionally used to make tamales, typically filled with meat, beans, or cheese.
To eat Tamales, they must be removed from the banana leaves or husks in which they are wrapped. It would be nice to serve these with guacamole and rice, with some pico de gallo on top. Although tamales seem complicated (although it’s fun as multiple people help stuff and wrap them! ), they are quite easy to make. Do not fear them! Only two components are necessary.
Despite people’s myths, tamales are nutritious as they contain vitamins, minerals, proteins, and carbs in large quantities. Limit the fat content to keep it healthier for your body.
Are you not curious how this delicious dish is prepared? Let’s find out:
Masa, made up of added lime and water, is a corn mash. Fat that is mostly vegetable shortening or lard is added to bind it. Usually, sixty percent of masa while the forty percent of filling constitute tamales. Purchase maseca that are specifically made for tamales. Add salt, garlic powder, and paprika to it. Broth after adding oil and mixing it with hands.
It is prepared with marinated chicken, pork, cheese, and salsa. Then it is placed inside the wrapping. Vegetarian tamales are equipped with any veggie and some beans. But if we talk about the past, fillings can be anything hunters brought home.
Tamales are incomplete without wrapping. Wrapping is one of the main essentials of this dish. Mostly this wrapping is a corn husk that is soaked. Or else it can also be agave or banana leaf.
Husks can be purchased from any market in Latin America. But the dry husks, and soak them for approximately thirty minutes in hot water. It will soften them. Now place them in a tray.
Tamales may crumble if you do not use the right ingredients. It should be prepared with technique if you want its exact taste.
How to Eat Tamales?
Tamales can be served with beans and rice. First of all, open the husk and look at its masa and filling. Start eating. You can also enjoy a cold drink with it. If you want to eat it like street food, do not eat it with utensils (knife and fork).
Reheating instructions are freed:
Tamales should be frozen as follows:
Making tamales in bulk and freezing them on busy nights is something I enjoy doing. The tamales can be frozen for up to three months if they are allowed to cool completely before being placed in a freezer ziplock bag.
Tamales should be reheated as follows:
Tamales leftover or frozen can be warmed in the microwave by wrapping them in damp paper towels. They will “steam” more easily once wet paper towels are added. Make sure not to overdo it with the unfolding!
Tamales should be served with:
- Pico de gallo, salsa, avocado, sour cream, and sour cream.
- Your taste buds will be in heaven with authentic Mexican rice!
- Beans refried from scratch.
- Making Horchata at Home
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