Chicken Tamale Recipe
20-30 Corn Husks
4 Cups Water
5 lbs. Whole Chicken (skinless and cut up)
1 onion, cut in half
6 cloves garlic
1 tablespoon salt
1-1 1/2 teaspoons powdered cumin, to taste
1-1 1/2 teaspoons ground black pepper, to taste
5 lbs. prepared De Alba tamale dough, divided use
1. Soak corn husks in a container of hot water 1-2 hours to make them pliable. Keep them submerged.
2. Boil 4 cups water in a pot. Add chicken, onion, garlic and salt. Reduce to medium-low hear and simmer 30 minutes or until cooked. Remove chicken from broth, cool, debone and shred or cut up. In a blender, mix the leftover broth with 2 tablespoons if tamale dough (also called masa). Pour broth mixture back into pot and add meat, cumin and black pepper. Stir and simmer 15-20 minutes to thicken the filling mixture.
3. Drain corn husks and stand them in a container with narrow ends up. Husks have a rough and smooth side. Spread dough on the smooth side, starting in the middle, about 3-4 inches from the bottom-the wider end- and them spread to the bottom and sides. This should be a thin layer of dough, about 1/8 inch thick. Spoon 2-3 tablespoons of meat mixture. After spreading meat mixture onto dough, you can add optional ingredients before rolling it. Optional ingredients include corn, squash, roasted peppers and cheese. Roll husk over from one side to the other and overlap. Now fold top of husk down and squeeze bottom of tamale. Every tamales can be individually tied with string or leftover thin strips of husk. Also, tamales can ge tied in bundles of a half-dozen.
4. Position tamales, folded part down, in a steamer basket that is deep enough. If not, just lay on basket carefully with folded points facing down. Position basket in pot with 2-3 inches of water and bring to a boil then cover well with tight fitting lid. Lower heat and steam on medium-low for 1 hour. If necessary, add more water during the cooking process but let the tamales steam an extra 15 minutes to make up for lost heat.
5. Turn off heat and let tamales set, covered, 10 minutes before handling to avoid breaking them.
Makes 20-30 tamales.
COOK’S TIP For better, fresher flavor, uncooked tamales can be kept frozen and cooked as needed.