Tuesday, November 26, 2013


For a decade while living in southern Arizona, a culinary highlight of the holiday season was eating tamales.

Tamales, for those who are unfamiliar, are made with "masa," a corn dough and are filled with spicy meat or cheese and green chili  peppers.

They are steamed in corn husks. 

I used to look for a Mexican man in front of Bookman's, one of several fabulous used book (and more) stores, and buy homemade tamales from him.

(Oh Lord, I desperately miss Bookman's.)

Since moving to the east, the chances of finding someone selling tamales on the street is zero.

However, my daughter surprised me with some wonderful news!

She made tamales and saved several for me.

Oh, it was so wonderful biting into those luscious pockets of yumminess.

They have olives in them, too, and I add Herdez salsa, lettuce and a dollop of sour cream.

By the way, Herdez is the only salsa that will do. 

It's so delicious.

 We buy ours at Wal-Mart, of all places!

So now, the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays may officially begin!  The tamales are ready.



Bookie said...

Oh, I would have liked to taste your tamales. I have only had canned kind and surely the homemade would be better. I have never eaten them in Southwest either...must find some authentic ones some place. Surely a local Mexican place might them don't you think? I have seen masa in the stores. Do you cook with it?

Linda O'Connell said...

there used to be a hot tamale man who sold them from his push cart when I was a kid. He'd shout, "Hot tamales, red hot! Get your red hots here!" you took me back to another time and place with your post.

Weekend-Windup said...

Looks good...

Marta said...

Hello from Spain: I did not eat tamales. Tamales have exquisite appearance. Very tempting, we keep in touch

The Old Parsonage said...

I've never had them, but I have heard of them. They look wonderful and I know that I would devour them!

Happy Thanksgiving Susan to you and yours!


Babs said...

Hate to say it but I wouldn't touch one with a ten foot pole. They look lovely in the picture but I would avoid hot,spicy foods like the plague. Is there a Brookman's online?

Susan said...

One of my dear friends in California, mother makes tamales to have on Christmas Eve. She makes me special "just cheese" because I'm a vegetarian. I think it's a lovely tradition, XOXO

diane.stetson said...

Don't care for tamales at all...can't eat anything spicy in my old age...so glad YOU can enjoy them. Nice of your daughter to make them for you!

janice15 said...

Looks yummy... can eat them at the moment though.. Happy Holidays with love Janice

Nellie said...

My step-grandmother actually had a hot tamale business when I was growing up. She had a booth at the fair every fall where she sold them, as well as in other locations. My grandfather would go back to the country where he had grown up to pick up the actual corn husks for wrapping the tamales. I have toyed with the idea of making some, but they are rather labor intensive. That was quite an undertaking for your daughter! My hat is off to her!

Chatty Crone said...

I love the tamales made that way with corn on the outside. Just LOVE them, but I have never ever made them. We have a lot of places that sell them that way and they are delicious! sandie

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