How to Make the Perfect Nacatamales

How to Make the Perfect Nacatamales

Soul Food

It means different things to different people.  My people are of French-Canadian stock and think of Tortierre and Maple butter on fresh homemade bread.  For my partner, whose family is from Nicauragua, it’s Nacatamales.

How to Make the Perfect Nacatamales https://wp.me/paqxAL-1MiWe went to California for Christmas a couple years ago and had traditional Nicaraguan Nacatamales on Christmas eve.  Every culture has their traditional foods, so I could relate to the significance of the Nacatamale.  What’s more, as someone who loves to cook, I could see the skill needed to make such a delightful package.  Challenge accepted.

This past Christmas, I set about the serious business of making Nacatamales.  Not just any Nacatamales, but the very best ones I possibly could.

Mission accomplished.

Here’s how I did it.

I started with the dough

I added the following to a pot, cooking on high and stirring constantly:

5 cups white MASECA®
6 Cloves of garlic
12 ounces Butter
2 cups Milk
¼ cup Orange juice

Once the batter was cooked and no longer sticking to the pot, I removed it from the heat.

The Meat

Here’s where I cheated a little.  I took a large package of pork seasoned and marinated for fajitas (which you can find in any HEB grocery store here in San Antonio) and cut the meat into small cubes.  I placed them all in a large frying pan and cooked thoroughly before draining the liquid.

Then I Prepared the Filling:

4 Tomatoes, sliced
1 Medium Onion, sliced
1 Green Pepper, sliced
1 Package Dried Pineapple Pieces
1 cup Uncooked rice (soaked in water overnight)

Wrappers

These were easy.  The market down the street sells Banana leaves in their frozen food section.

I cut the Banana leaves into 5″ wide strips and got a ball of hemp twine ready for wrapping.

Building the Perfect Nacatamale

Once I had everything laid out and ready for production, I started building the nacatamales, one at a time, with all the care and love one should when making soul food.  Follow the photos and you can’t go wrong.

When you’ve assembled them all, steam in a tamale pot for 2 hours and Voila!



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