Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Ta-Molly Pie

Did I alter the title of a dish just to put another picture of my dog on my blog? You betcha. This has become Em's new favorite dish, causing me to refine the recipe rather quickly as well as get my cooking time for an hour total. Tamale's are something I have a deep, deep fondness for. I remember getting from people selling out of their car on the weekends. I would bring home tamales, tortillas, make some beans, and that would be dinner. For anyone who would find this odd, I never got sick, and they were always delicious. Think of it this way, if the guy who sold me that food did make people sick, no one would buy his wares and he would not be selling (word travels fast). I miss food opportunities like this, I feel our society frowns upon the homemade and homegrown unless strictly regulated. Back to tamales. I do not have time to make tamales themselves, but I can make a pie. With tamale ingredients. I tested out the Cook's Illustrated version, and made some improvements (in my eyes). It’s a great dish to feed a crowd, and works nicely with turkey or vegetarian (just add rice or more beans).

Tamale Pie

1 pound lean ground beef
1 onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 jalapenos, minced
2 tablespoons ancho chile powder
1 teaspoon dried oregano
½ teaspoon cumin
1 15oz can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup corn, frozen or fresh
1 15oz can diced tomatoes, with juice
4 ounces cheese (Colby jack or Monterey jack)
¾ cup coarse corn meal
2 1/2 cups water
1 ½ tablespoons vegetable oil
1 teaspoon smoked paprika

Preheat oven to 375°F.

In a large skillet over medium heat, add beef, breaking up and cooking until browned. Add the onion and some salt, cooking until the onion is softened. Add the jalapeno and garlic, cook for 1 minute. Add the chile powder, oregano, cumin, beans, corn, and tomatoes into the skillet. Cook until most of the juices from the tomatoes have evaporated and the mixture is slightly thickened. Season and remove from heat.

Meanwhile, heat water in a pot until boiling. Stir in cornmeal, reduce heat to low, and whisk until thickened, about 1 minute. Stir in oil and paprika, season with salt and pepper.
Stir cheese into meat mixture. Transfer to a 9x13 baking pan or similar vessel. Top with cornmeal mixture, spreading to the edges to seal. Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes. Remove foil and turn on broiler to high. Continue cooking until cornmeal is set and slightly browned. Let cool for 10 minutes. Serve.


Tasty Eats At Home November 18, 2009 at 10:46 AM  

Sounds delicious. I too love tamales - there are a few people in our office that have (excuse the highly stereotypical comment here) Mexican grandmothers that make them every holiday. I have made them before (posted them on my blog), but honestly would just as soon purchase them from someone else! Love that this is a good way to get that craving satisfied.

Cajun Chef Ryan November 18, 2009 at 2:40 PM  

Now that is a comfort food dish!

the brhymenoceros February 28, 2010 at 11:21 AM  

As a fellow former-Border resident I agree that sometimes the best foods come out of car trunks! Especially the ones in a Wal-Mart parking lot.

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