Serves 8-10 people


For the Tamale Dough

1 bag (about 30) corn husks
re-hydrated in warm water
1 ½ cup masa harina
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
½ cup unsalted butter, at
room temperature
¾ cup warm water

For the Filling

4 ears of corn grilled
4 each zucchini sliced in moon shapes and grilled
2 cups Queso Fresco
5 each Pasilla chilis roasted and chopped
1 teaspoon chili powder
Juice of 2 limes
1 tablespoon honey
Salt and pepper to taste

For the Salsa

2 large tomatoes
4 tomatillos, husked
2 serrano peppers
1 jalepeno
4 green onions
½ avocado peeled and seeded
Juice of one lime
1 tablespoon honey
Salt, to taste

Special Equipment

Large pot
Steamer insert


For the Tamale Dough

Soak the corn husks in warm water, placing a heavy plate or bowl on them to keep submerged. Let stand until husks soften at least 3 hours.
In a large bowl fitted with a paddle beat lard or vegetable shortening on high speed until light and fluffy. Turn mixer off. Add 2 cups of masa harina and then mix on low speed until a small dough ball forms. Turn dough ball out into a large mixing bowl. Add remaining masa harina, baking powder, salt and about 3 cups of the warm water. Mix well. The dough should be soft, but not runny. If the dough appears dry add more water.

For the Zucchini Filling

With a knife take the corn of the cobb and place the kernels in a bowl. Add the other ingredients and mix together. Season filling to taste.

For the Salsa

Place tomatoes and chilies in a 500 degree oven and roast until slightly charred.  Wearing a pair of latex gloves, peel the chilies.  Place all ingredients in a blender and blend. Season with salt as needed.

For Tamale Assembly

Spread about a ¼ cup of masa dough in the center of the corn husk.  Leave at least a 1 ½ inch border at the tapered bottom end of the husk and about a ¾ inch border on the top end. Spoon about 1 ½ tablespoons of the zucchini filling in the center of the dough square.
Pick up the two long sides of the husks and fold them around the masa and zucchini.  Allow the flaps to overlap, to form a little bundle. Now, fold the tapered end of the husks up towards the top of the tamale. With a thin strip of corn husks, tie a ribbon around the bottom flap of the tamale to secure the flap in place.
Do not tie it too tight; leave room for tamale to expand. When all tamales are assembled place them upright (open end up) into the steamer. Allow room in the pot for the tamales to cook evenly. If there is extra room in the pot, form a ball with foil and fill in the gaps of the pot, this will prevent the tamales from falling over. Place any remaining corn husks loosely on the top of the tamales. Cover tightly with a lid and set steamer to cook on the stove on high heat. Make sure there is enough hot water in the steamer at all times. A little trick is to use a penny in the bottom of the pot. If you hear it rattle, you are out of hot water. Tamales take 45 minutes to one hour to cook.

To Serve

Open corn husk and top with salsa, Yum!

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