Learn about tamales

It’s almost tamale season, and it’s a great time to learn about tamales.

First of all, what’s a tamale?

Wikipedia says: 
“A tamale is a traditional Mesoamerican dish made of masa or dough (starchy, and usually corn-based), which is steamed in a corn husk or banana leaf. The wrapping can either be discarded prior to eating, or be used as a plate and eaten from within. Tamales can be filled with meats, cheeses, fruits, vegetables, chilies or any preparation according to taste, and both the filling and the cooking liquid may be seasoned.”

That’s a pretty dull description of a very yummy food item.

learn about tamales

Tamales are fun! You can eat a tamale anytime! The winter season is the tamale season, and you might find tamales on the menu for Thanksgiving and Christmas ( and maybe in your treat-or-treat bag during Halloween!)

The best way to learn about tamales is to
1) eat one or 2) make your own.


Here’s a great recipe from allrecipes.com

Time required:
35 mins for preparation
3 hours for cooking time

Place pork into a Dutch oven with onion and garlic, and add water to cover.
Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer until the meat is cooked through, about 2 hours.

Use rubber gloves to remove stems and seeds from the chile pods.
Place chiles in a saucepan with 2 cups of water.
Simmer, uncovered, for 20 minutes, then remove from heat to cool.

Transfer the chiles and water to a blender and blend until smooth.
Strain the mixture, stir in salt, and set aside.
Shred the cooked meat and mix in one cup of the chile sauce.

Soak the corn husks in a bowl of warm water.
In a large bowl, beat the lard with a tablespoon of the broth until fluffy.
Combine the masa harina, baking powder and salt; stir into the lard mixture,
adding more broth as necessary to form a spongy dough.

Spread the dough out over the corn husks to 1/4 to 1/2 inch thickness.
Place one tablespoon of the meat filling into the center.
Fold the sides of the husks in toward the center and place in a steamer. Steam for 1 hour.

Remove tamales from husks and drizzle remaining chile sauce over.
Top with sour cream.

For a creamy sauce, mix sour cream into the chile sauce.

Sounds awesome! Try this at home, and get the family involved. That’s the traditional way!

So what did you you learn about tamales?

One more: Do you want to learn about tamales? Just drop into Don Jose for the best tamales for anytime!

learn about tamales from Don Jose Mexican Food

Happy Tamale Season!

Thanks to allrecipes.com for the tamale recipe!

Here’s a YouTube video all about tamales and how to make them!


Welcome to Don Jose’ Mexican Food!

Located at 3734 E. Thomas Rd. in Phoenix, Arizona

Don Jose offers freshly cooked Mexican food and fast, friendly customer service. We take pride in preparing our meals from the freshest ingredients with authentic recipes. We also provide an outstanding catering service for events such as birthday parties, graduations, or other special occasions.

Open every day, except for Easter, Thanksgiving and Christmas! 

Mon-Wed  10:30 – 9:00
Thur-Fri    10:30 – 10:00
Sat    9:30 – 10:00
Sun   9:30 – 9:00

3734 E. Thomas Rd. Phoenix, Az.
Located on the north side of Thomas Rd, across from Tower Plaza and the Wal-Mart Center.