Healthy Tamales

A tamale on plate with a fork cutting into it

  • 2 pounds pork tenderloin
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 teaspoon canola oil
  • 1 medium onion
  • 1 medium bell pepper
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1 plum tomato
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cumin
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried chili peppers, crushed
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste

  • 4 cups masa corn flour
  • 4 teaspoons canola oil
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 cups pork broth (reserved from cooking the pork)
  • 18 to 20 dried corn husks
1. Prepare the pork by placing it in pot and adding enough water to cover the meat. Bring it to boil. Cover and simmer for 20 to 25 minutes until the meat is tender.
2. When the meat is done, remove it from the broth and set aside on a plate to cool. Reserve the broth. When the pork is cool enough to handle, shred it with two forks adding enough broth to keep it moist.
3. Heat the oil in a large skillet and sauté the onion, garlic and peppers until tender. Add the tomato, cumin, chili peppers and salt. Add tomato paste and 1/2 cup of the broth and simmer for about 15 minutes.
4. Puree the sauce in a food processor and then return to the pan. Add the pork and heat through.
5. Soak the corn husks in a large bowl of hot water for about 15 to 20 minutes turning occasionally until they are pliable.
6. Prepare the masa dough by combining all ingredients and mixing together until mixture clumps together, adding more broth if necessary. Turn onto a lightly floured surface and knead lightly 4 to 5 times. Divide into 16 small balls.
7. Drain and rinse the corn husks. Pat dry and keep covered with a damp towel. Tear two or three corn husks into 1/4 inch strips to use for ties.
8. Assemble the tamales by flattening a corn husk on your worktable. Spread one ball of dough over the husk leaving a 1-inch margin on all sides. Add about 2 tablespoons of filling to the center. Roll up lengthwise into a cylinder and wrap with the corn husk. Secure the ends by tying with a strip of husk. Repeat with remaining dough, filling, and husks.
9. Place prepared tamales in a steamer basket and set over 1 inch of boiling water. Cover tightly, reduce heat and steam for about 30-45 minutes. Check frequently and replenish water if needed.

Serves: 16

Nutrition Content (per serving)
207 calories, 5 g fat, 1 g saturated fat, 24 g carbohydrates, 1 g sugars, 1 g fiber, 18 g protein, 143 mg sodium