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Source: Nestle® Very Best Meals

Tamales are wintertime food in the American Southwest, and a Christmas Eve must in the Mexican-influenced cuisine so popular there. Days before families gather round to fix these delicious bundles.
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Serves: 24
Prep Time: 45 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours
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1 recipe (about 5 cups) prepared beef chicken or pork filling, shredded
1 package (8-oz.) dried corn husks
2/3 cup lard or shortening
4 cups masa harina flour, (mexican corn masa mix)
2 teaspoons salt
3 cups broth from filling, or water
1/3 cup lard or shortening, melted

SORT corn husks, setting aside any torn ones. Soak intact husks in warm water for at least 1 hour or until softened and easy to fold.

BEAT 2/3 cup lard in large mixer bowl until creamy. Combine masa harina and salt in medium bowl. Alternately add masa harina mixture and broth to lard, mixing well after each addition. Gradually add melted lard, mixing until consistency of thick cake batter (masa).

SPREAD 1/4 cup masa, using back of spoon, to form a square in the center of one husk. Place about 1/4 cup meat filling in center of masa square. Fold right then left edge of husk over masa. Fold up bottom edge to roll. Repeat with remaining ingredients.

PLACE vegetable steamer in pot with lid; add water to just below steamer. Arrange tamales upright in steamer rack. Cover top of tamales with reserved dry husks and a damp towel; cover. Bring to a boil; reduce heat to low. Steam, adding water as needed, for 2 to 2 1/2 hours or until masa pulls away from husks.

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