One of the hardest parts of being a new vegan (or even an old seasoned vegan) is trying to keep up with all the new products out there. I must have spent over $50 looking for the "right" vegan cheese my first year being a vegan and I have over 50 vegan/vegetarian cookbooks in my arsenal but not all the recipes are the greatest. I’m the first born so I’m used to being a Guinea Pig and now I’m your Vegan Guinea Pig. So here are my recommendations and critiques. Let me know what you think!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Christmas Tamales

These tamales are from my new book Quick and Easy Vegan Celebrations. There’s no quick way to make tamales, but, as a California girl, there is no way I could open the Christmas season without them. In Mexico, Christmas and tamales go hand in hand, and in my hometown of Fresno, California, the same notion rings true. It simply isn’t Christmas without the tamales.

These tamales are also Soy Free and Gluten Free.

12 dried corn husks
2 cups masa harina
1 teaspoon fine sea salt
¼ teaspoon garlic powder
½ cup canola oil
1½ cups vegetable stock
1½ cups steamed fresh or frozen corn
1½ cups cooked black beans
1 whole roasted red pepper diced
1½ teaspoons sofrito
2¼ teaspoons Taco Seasoning

Soak the corn husks in warm water while you prepare masa and filling.
Combine the masa, salt, and garlic powder in a large bowl. Add the canola oil and mix with your hands. Add the stock 1/2 cup at a time. Continue to mix with your hands or a large spoon, adding in stock until you have a consistency that you can spread with a knife.

Stir together the corn, black beans, red pepper, sofrito, and Taco Seasoning in a medium bowl. One at a time, shake excess water off corn husks and lay flat on your cooking surface.

Spread masa mixture evenly over the corn husks, working it with your hands if you need to. Spread a large spoonful of filling on top of the masa.

Fold the sides of the corn husk to the center over the masa so that they overlap, making sure that none of the filling leaks out. Fold the empty part of the husk under so that it rests against the side of the tamale with a seam.

Place the tamales in a steamer and cook for 40 to 45 minutes. The tamales are cooked when they separate easily from the corn husk


  1. I just wanted to say that I love the Tacos seasoning. It's even better than the packaged!

  2. What is sofrito? Where would I find that??

  3. Sofrito is a cooking and seasoning base that is made by slowly simmering tomatoes, onions, garlic, green peppers, and cilantro. You can find prepared sofrito in the ethnic or Latin-American foods aisle of your local grocery store. Usually Goya is the post popular brand.


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