Some of you may be ready to start making tamales before I am. Here are some things that might be helpful. You can read this post from when Nicole and I made the tamales last month. There are photos in there that might be helpful.
Tips that help me:
- After I shred the meat with my hands or two forks, I like to put it in the mixer, with a little of the “broth” and that gives me more of the texture I like for the meat.
- As far as the texture of the masa, that’s the biggest challenge. I’ve read that when the texture is right, a ball of dough will float in a glass of ice water. I find it easier just to add liquid as needed til the masa dough spreads to my liking on the corn husk. If the dough wants to curl up and not stick to the husk, I find that it needs a little more liquid. If the dough is too thin and doesn’t appear to be covering the husk well, it may need a little more masa. If your dough isn’t spreading nicely, scrape it off the shell and work with the dough til you get it the right consistency.
- Don’t worry about perfection. The flavor is there so if they look a little rough, they’re still going to taste great.
My meat is done and cooling in the fridge. The husks are soaking in hot water and will be ready to begin shortly after breakfast.