Holiday Tamales

Updated: Jan 20, 2020

By Yolanda Ortiz y Pino

Taken from Original Native New Mexican Cooking, an Ortiz y Pino recipe book from the legendary Galisteo restaurant, La Mancha. This dining spot drew visitors from all over the country; an LA Times reviewer called the fare “the most wonderful New Mexican food I have ever tasted.”

The book is available at the La Sala bookstore.

Tamale recipe



2 Lbs. Pork Shoulder

2 Lbs. Beef Stew Meat

1 Qt. Blended Red Chile Pods or

6 Tbs. Powdered Red Chile

3 Garlic Cloves, crushed or minced

2 Teas. Salt

2 Teas. Oregano


8 Cups Masa Harina

1 Cup Pure Lard Or Shortening

2 Teas. Salt

Dry Corn Husks

Coarsely grind pork and beef in meat grinder. Salt lightly and cook in skillet until tender.  Add chile, garlic, more salt and oregano. If powdered red chile is used, add enough water to make a thick paste.  Cook slowly until the meat is tender, and the mixture is thick. Wash, trim and soak the corn husks in warm water. Cut about 8 inches long. Combine corn meal with lard or shortening and salt.  Add enough water to make a dough that does not stick to the hands and is of spreading consistency. Spread dough on corn husks about ¼” thick, the width of the husk and about 5” down, leaving the pointed end of the husk to fold over after it is filled with meat. Place about two tablespoons of the meat mixture in center of dough, spreading lengthwise and rolling from the long side. Fold the bottom part over.  Cook tamales in a pressure cooker for 20 minutes.

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