What To Look For When Making Tamale Masa This Year Lubbock
Hey Lubbock it's time to make tamales if you haven't already but there are some things you should keep in mind when selecting your masa (dough for the tamales).
Consistency is Key
When looking for tamale masa or making your own it's always good to make sure that the consistency of the masa is perfect. That means the masa can not be too runny otherwise it will not make nice tamales but instead balls of masa in corn husks. Also the masa cannot be too thick that it's hard to spread on the husks. So the key is a perfect moist masa that spreads easily while also holding its form on the corn husk.
Sabor es Todo
We all know consistency is what helps when making the tamales but flavor cannot be forgotten. Whether you buy your masa from the store or make it from scratch you can always add to it to improve the flavors of the tamales. It's advised to add some flavors to your masa like lard, bouillon flavors, butter, and chiles to the masa to improve the flavors of the meat as the tamales steam.
When spreading the masa technique is very important and can literally change the entirety of the tamales. That means when spreading the masa if you spread too much masa that could lead to thick tamales that will not cook all the way through and you will be eating raw dough and filling. If you don't add enough masa then the tamales could break easily or spread so much that there are holes in your tamales when you unwrap them. You have to be perfect like your abuela, tias, and primas when spreading the masa.
While playing with the flavors and consistency of the masa always remember to have fun while you perfect everything. That means keeping an eye on what you add to the masa so it's not too salty or too runny and can become an amazing food. If you are skilled at tamales de dulce (dessert tamales) then you might have even more fun with all the sweet flavors and spices that can be added.
The Hub City Tamale Trail: A Quest for Lubbock's Best Tamales
Gallery Credit: Mikael Donnovan