For a few years, Thanksgiving weekend was punctuated by our household gathering to make and freeze tamales to get pleasure from on Christmas Eve.
We purchased the dough from the ‘tamale girl’ who bought it from her home in a close-by city. My brother-in-law slow-cooked a pork shoulder with chiles, garlic, and onions to shred for the filling. It was a household effort; with out a big solid of cooks (at the very least eight), it will be inconceivable to perform such a feat.
That’s why this tamale pie is such a revelation!
Layers of cheese, canned inexperienced chiles, scallions, and shredded hen from a rotisserie fowl are tucked between two blankets of dough in a skillet to make a pie. No extra spreading and filling and folding and steaming! No, a pie just isn’t fairly as charming as little packets of corn husks full of treasures, but it surely does require far much less time. I’ll take it!
WHAT IS TAMALE DOUGH?
The ‘tamale girl’ who equipped us with the dough floor her personal soaked corn, so it was nonetheless moist when floor. Then she blended it with lard, the standard ingredient of tamale dough.
As a result of few of us are going to seek out corn kernels which have been soaked in slaked lime and grind them ourselves, I take advantage of masa harina (the simply out there corn flour) on this recipe and reconstituted it with water to make the dough. You would additionally reconstitute masa harina with hen inventory if you would like a good better taste increase, however the dough is sweet made with water, too.
As a substitute of lard, I used vegetable shortening, which is extra simply out there. I additionally added butter for further taste.
MASA HARINA VS. MASA
Masa harina might be present in most supermarkets that carry Latin American meals. That is the particular flour used to make the dough for tortillas and tamales. It isn’t the identical as corn flour or corn meal. For masa harina, dried corn is first soaked in calcium hydroxide (slaked lime) and the powerful coating of the kernels is eliminated. The kernels are then finely floor and dried once more to make the flour (masa harina).
Masa and masa harina will not be the identical. Masa is the precise dough, and masa harina is the flour it’s constituted of. To make corn tortillas, you need to reconstitute masa harina by including water to make a mushy dough. Masa (dough) for tamales is reconstituted masa harina with fats added to it to lighten it and impart taste, so the tamales will not be leaden.
HOW TO FREEZE AND REHEAT THE PIE
The pie might be frozen after baking. Let it cool after which take away it from the skillet in wedges somewhat than freezing the pie within the skillet itself (so your skillet isn’t out of fee).
When you freeze the wedges in a container with a tightly becoming lid, you’ll be able to pull out as many as you want at a time. They may hold properly for about three months. Reheat them within the microwave.
Leftover pie might be refrigerated for as much as three days and reheated within the microwave.
HOW TO SAVE TIME MAKING THIS RECIPE
Laboring for hours over a dish has its deserves, however so do does discovering methods to go straightforward on your self when making dinner is a nightly obligation. I used just a few quick cuts to make this a simple weeknight meal.
- Use a rotisserie hen: You gained’t want a complete hen, however leftovers might be changed into soup or hen salad for an additional meal.
- Use chopped, canned inexperienced chiles as a substitute of roasting, peeling, and chopping contemporary ones.
- Use grated cheese: I in all probability can purchase inventory in grated cheese corporations.