Mama Totota's Tamales

Mama Totota's Tamales Recipe
Randy Mayor

Recipe from

Cooking Light

Nutritional Information

Calories 344
Caloriesfromfat 19 %
Fat 7.4 g
Satfat 1.7 g
Monofat 2.5 g
Polyfat 2.5 g
Protein 23.1 g
Carbohydrate 45.9 g
Fiber 2 g
Cholesterol 56 mg
Iron 6.3 mg
Sodium 638 mg
Calcium 144 mg


14 large dried cornhusks
1 pound pork tenderloin
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 1/2 teaspoons chili powder
1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon paprika
Cooking spray
1 cup chopped onion
3 cups masa harina
1 1/2 teaspoons paprika
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups water
2 teaspoons vegetable oil


Place cornhusks in a large bowl of hot water; weigh down husks with another bowl. Soak for at least 30 minutes. Drain husks; rinse with cold water. Drain and pat dry.

Tear 2 cornhusks lengthwise into 12 (1/2-inch-wide) strips (6 strips per husk).

Preheat oven to 400°.

To prepare filling, trim fat from pork. Combine the cumin and the next 4 ingredients (cumin through paprika); rub pork with 2 1/4 teaspoons cumin mixture. Place pork on a broiler pan coated with cooking spray; insert a meat thermometer into pork. Bake at 400° for 30 minutes or until thermometer registers 155°. Cover pork loosely with foil; let stand 10 minutes. Cut pork in half crosswise; shred with 2 forks.

Heat a small nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray over medium-high heat. Add onion; sauté 5 minutes or until tender. Combine pork, onion, and 2 1/4 teaspoons cumin mixture.

To prepare dough, combine masa harina, paprika, and 1 teaspoon salt in a large bowl. Add water and oil, stirring to form a soft dough. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface; knead lightly 4 to 5 times. Divide dough into 12 equal portions. Working with 1 portion, place dough in the center of 1 husk. Press the dough into a 4 x 2 1/2-inch rectangle, leaving about a 1 1/2-inch border at the tapered end and a 1-inch border at the broad end. Arrange about 1/4 cup filling down center of dough. Take 1 long side of husk, and roll dough around filling, making sure dough seals around filling. Tie 1 husk strip around tapered end of husk to secure it. Trim all but about 1/2 inch excess cornhusk from broad end. Repeat procedure with remaining husks, dough, and pork mixture.

Arrange tamales in steamer, and cover with steamer lid. Add water to a large skillet to a depth of 1 inch; bring to a boil. Place steamer in pan; steam half of tamales for 12 minutes or until the husks peel away cleanly. Remove tamales from steamer. Repeat procedure with remaining tamales.

December 2000
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