Do you love good hot tamales? I sure do! My grandparents lived on a small farm about 15 miles from Many, LA. Their address was Many but they really lived in the middle of nowhere! I was born there and if I have any say in my future, which I probably do not . . I’ll live there again some day. See . . living in the woods with no neighbors within miles and miles is my heritage.
Zwolle, LA is another small community about 10 miles from my grandparents’ place. Zwolle has the best hot tamales. They even have a Tamale Fiesta every year. Through the years I’ve learned that various regions have their on idea about what’s a good tamale and since I grew up on Zwolle tamales, those are my idea of the perfect tamale. Nowhere except Zwolle can I get those tamales I love so for the past year I’ve been thinking I’d make my own. I’ve been searching and reading recipes and trying to come up with a combination that might be close to Zwolle tamales.
This morning as soon as I finished baking the Eggs Florentine to send to Vince’s work (which was a big hit), and baking cookies because a friend was having a problem with her recipe and I offered to test it with my flour, I started making tamales.
There’s the chocolate chip cookies, a few cookies for me without chocolate, the bowl of meat and the bowl of masa mix.
Here we go! The part I was dreading. It wasn’t hard at all! A bit time consuming but definitely not hard.
Starting to fill the basket. They have to stand on their ends for steaming.
There we go . . 7 dozen tamales!
Put the basket in the pot and steam them for about an hour.
Once they were cooled, six of them went into bags for vacuum sealing and freezing.
But first . . there was lunch. I steamed a few of them in my little electric steamer so we could have them early. I could hardly wait to try them. My guess was that the first time I made them was an experiment and the next time I make them they would be perfect but . . beginner’s luck I guess . . they were perfect this time. I don’t think I could have gotten closer to Zwolle tamales if I’d used their secret recipe.
If I have to say so myself . . that is one pretty hot tamale!
Smothered in homemade chili, cheese, sour cream and sliced black olives — yummy lunch! I think there will always be hot tamales in my freezer!