We experimented making tamales this weekend. We were thrilled to find that we could make them quickly with an Instapot.
As with most whole food, plant based recipes, this recipe is time intensive & requires a couple of steps. For best results, proceed in this order:
Submerge corn husks in water – place a pot or plate on top of them to keep them submerged. Allow to soak for several hours while preparing the other steps.
10-15 Hot New Mexico Chile Pods with stems & seeds removed (they are dried & in bags)
3 c. water +/-
3 whole tomatoes
1 whole onion (3/4 chopped)
1 tsp oregano
1 -2 cloves garlic
1 small can tomato paste
1 teaspoon salt
Boil chilies, & tomatoes until soft, & then blend together along with a 1/4 of an onion & 1 tsp oregano & a clove or two of garlic, & salt. Strain with a sieve. Mix in tomato paste. Set aside.
1 medium sized sweet potato (cooked, or microwaved for 6-10 minutes, then peeled)
1 can black beans (drained – juices reserved)
1 small can whole green chiles, drained & diced
1/2 medium onion, chopped
1 can jackfruit in brine, drained & chopped
1.5 Tablespoons 100% maple syrup
1 teaspoon cocoa powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 garlic cloves, minced
1-2 cups Red Sauce (see above recipe)
Saute onion & green chiles to soften. Add garlic, black beans & sweet potato. Use a bean or potato masher to combine mixture.
Add red sauce, one cup at a time, adjusting for consistency. Add syrup, cocoa powder, & salt to taste – mix well.
Mix in jackfruit. Set aside until ready to assemble tamales.
6 cups maseca flour
6 cups vegetable broth (more as needed, or water)
1/2 cup reserved black bean juice
1-2 teaspoons salt (or to taste)
2 Tablespoons baking powder
2 teaspoons chile powder
Mix dry ingredients together. Then add wet ingredients & mix thoroughly – the consistency should be like peanut butter.
Additional Tamale Fillings:
Roasted red peppers, pitted prunes, green olives, black olives, raisins, etc.
To Assemble Tamales:
Tear several corn husks into strips to tie tamales with.
Place steam basket into instapot, & add 1 cup of water to the bottom of the instapot.
Place corn husk onto a flat surface with the widest, flat edge at the bottom.
Place a dollop of masa one inch above bottom of the corn husk.
Spread out to 1-2 inches (depending on size of husks).
Add filling to the middle, & additional desired fillings. Additional red sauce may be added if desired.
Lightly press edges of the masa together then fold & wrap husk, overlapping sides.
Fold bottom section up. Secure with strip & tie, leaving flat edge open.
Place into a steam basket in the instapot, standing with open side up.
Once instapot is filled, close lid, close the vent, & steam on low for 20 minutes. Allow to release steam naturally for at least 10 minutes.
Remove tamales, & allow to cool.
They will continue to firm up as they cool.
Store in airtight container & refrigerate.
*Guatemalan tamales traditionally have a prune/plum & a green olive which provide both a sweet & sour flavor.