Healthy Tamales RecipePosted on Oct 28th 2010 1:00PM by Tanya Zuckerbrot
Tamales are a tradition for many Mexican-American families and Ida from Spring, TX would like to see a lighter version of her favorite dish. It has been her goal over this past year to eat better and to teach her three children to make healthy choices. She has recently incorporated a fitness program into her daily life and has been trying to find healthy recipes that taste great. Making tamales for special occasions throughout the year has been a tradition passed down by her grandparents. She would really like to continue that tradition, but without the large amounts of lard used in their recipe.
Most of the lard in this recipe is located in the outer layer mixed with the masa corn flour and baking powder. I will reduce the fat and calories in this layer by cutting out the lard and replacing it with pork broth and canola oil. As for the filling, I will cut the calories by using a lean cut of pork and adding some more chopped vegetables instead of the traditional shredded pork butt filling. By reusing the broth that the pork was cooked in I am able to add more flavor to the masa layer and reduce the calories to create this lighter version.
Ida, I hope this helps you to make healthy eating a tradition with your young family.
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.
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
More Healthy Recipes from That's Fit:
Low Fat Cornbread
Readers, I would love to hear from you! Please send me your favorite fattening recipes that need a RECIPE REHAB! Everything from your mom's meatloaf to your kid's favorite dessert -- let me lighten it up.
Celebrity dietitian and motivational life coach, Tanya Zuckerbrot, author of www.ffactordiet.com and founder of www.skinnyandthecity.com and www.theskinnyondietitians.com has helped thousands of people lose weight and keep it off with her program. Her philosophy? Tanya believes you should never sacrifice taste, even when you're eating healthy foods. Have a recipe in need of rehab? Send us your recipe!