Tamalada Family Time

6 Dec

Things to remember to do today

Enjoy the family

Enjoy the menudo

Enjoy working together

Enjoy the tamales

take lots of pictures


Tamalada Day

6 Dec

We will first have the menudo my husband prepared of us. He just finished preparing it. Having the menudo for breakfast will fill our bodies with energy and will help us bond as a family. We begin the morning with energy to spend the rest of the morning making tamales, sharing stories and having fun. The little ones learn that making tamales is not that simple and everybody learns to appreciate the proces.

For lunch or better said late lunch, we will eat the tamales, tamales, tamales and champurrado.

During the tamalada, every single member has a job. Everybody works and every body enjoys the tamales.

Continue Preparations

6 Dec

After preparing the pork for the tamales, refrigerate it. When making the tamales one needs to make sure it is cold. Using it warm can  spoil the tamales if they are not steamed right away.

Next steps;

cut the jack cheese into slices.

soak the corn husks until soft

ground some rice to add to the masa to make it fluffy, airy and light

get ready to welcome all the relatives on the next day

Typically the little ones are the ones with the job of cleaning the corn husks removing all possible corn silk, soaking them and taking them to the table

Preparing the chiles for the chiles with cheese tamales

4 Dec

After roasting the chiles, wrapped in a towel, paper bag or plastic bag. This process will soften the skin while they cool down to make it easier to remove the skin.

roast  the chiles pasillas on the griddle

roast the chiles pasillas on the griddle carefully making sure not to burn them.

Fresh chiles pasilla, roasted, peeled and diced

After roasting the chiles and letting cool down,remove the skin, the steam, the seed and slice the chiles in thin stripes

roasted chiles pasillas

Roasted and rested, ready to remove the skin.

Cooking the pork

4 Dec
Pork for the tamales

Pork for the tamales I like to use nice quality meat and don’t like to buy meat with bones. I don’t like people to bite into a tamal and find a bone. A bone in a tamal can be unsafe and not too tasty.


After the pork has rested for at least an hour, it will be very tender and tasty. It is ready for the next step. Put some olive oil in pan, heat and then cook the pork with onion to enhance the flavor. Too much oil will make them greasy, but tastier. I compromise and try to make them tasty without using too much oil.


When the pork chemistry has been changed to my liking I add the sauce I had previously made. I add browned flour to make sure the sauce thickens to my liking.


The pork is looking good and tasty


After a certain point, my pork and sauce looks good and it taste great. I make to taste as I go to the different steps. My mother always told me to make sure they had plenty of salt because once in the tamales they would lose some of the salt.


After the pork has been cooked for one hour, cover the por and let it rest for another hour. The pork will continue to cook with the heat stored in the pot. After that hour, the pork will be tasty and very tender.

cover pork with water, add onions, and pepper. Cook uncovered for one hour.

cover pork with water, add onions, and pepper. Cook uncovered for one hour. During the last fifteen minutes add the salt.

white onions

white onions- Use one onion to one and half in slices to cook the pork. Later one when the pork is fried, one onion also sliced will be used.

Pre-preparation for the tamalada Sauce for the pork

4 Dec
dried California chiles

dried California chiles Start with fresh dried California chiles. They are very tasty and super mild in terms of heat.

California dried chiles tasty but not spicy

California dried chiles tasty but not spicy. I like to remove the steam and the seeds before I roast them They have to be roasted with low heat, otherwise they’ll burn and taste bitter.

Carefully roast the chiles

Carefully roast the chiles I roast the chiles at low heat

sauce in the blender

blend to a smooth sauce.

chiles, garlic, pepper, and salt in the blender with the water from soaked chiles

chiles, garlic, pepper, and salt in the blender with the water from soaked chiles

Tamalada – Remembering my mother – celebrating family

4 Dec

My mother taught many things. Though out our lives the one thing I enjoyed every single time was cooking. We did have pleasant good times in the kitchen. When it came to our traditional food she was amazing with making tamales being one of the most treasured legacies.

To make delicious tamales it takes a whole family effort to coordinate a great meal and happy family get together. The matriarch in charge is the one who coordinates the event. On day ONE she needs to go the store to buy many of the basic ingredients. She will have to start cooking at least a whole day ahead, but possibly two. The pre-preparation time depends on the amount of tamales being made and how many people are helping with the work. Typically, the matriarch in charge takes the whole responsibility. On this occasion there will be two matriarchs making pre-preparations for the tamalada.