Filling and Steaming Corn Husk Tamales

Instructions

Filling the Tamales

  1. Place the dried corn husks in a large bowl and cover with boiling water. Let soak 30 minutes to one hour.
  2. Drain and select as many as you can of the larger pieces, but be careful not to open the crinkled leaves of the core that are full of corn silk.
  3. With a spoon, spread 1/4 to 1/3 cup of Masa dough mixture across the lower (wide) end of the husk, covering it from side to side and extending it about halfway up toward the narrow tip.
  4. For chicken, beef or other filling, place about 1 heaping tablespoon of filling in the center of the Masa mixture.
  5. Fold the left third over to the center and then fold the right side over it, then fold up the narrow end even with the wide end so the tamale is folded roughly in half crosswise. Place the tamales on a baking sheet until ready to steam.

Steaming the Tamales

  1. Arrange the tamales in a steamer, open ends facing up. Place some of the unused corn husks (and/or a wrung-out wet tea towel) over the tamales to help absorb steam. Pour boiling water into the bottom of the steamer to a depth of at least 1 inch. Cover tightly and bring quickly to a full boil over high heat.
  2. Reduce the heat to medium-low to maintain gentle bubbling.
  3. Cook for about 1 hour or until husks pull away from filling. Replenish boiling water as needed.
  4. Let the tamales stand 10 minutes before serving.

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