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Recipe

Puerto Rican Tamales

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These Puerto Rican Tamales take a little time but are well worth the effort. The filling is a delicious combination of pork, chiles, garbanzo beans, olives and raisins. Instead of masa made out of corn flour, this version uses a mixture of yautia, green bananas and plaintain. Yautia, also called malanga, is in the same family as taro root and can be found in Latin American markets.

  • mins. to Prepare
  • mins. Cooking Time
  • mins. Standing Time
  • mins. Total
  • Servings: 12 tamales

Ingredients

Original reipce makes 2 dozen Change Servings

  • ACHIOTE OIL
  • FILLING
  • SOFRITO
  • MASA
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Directions

  • Step 1 of 17

    FOR ACHIOTE OIL:
    COMBINE
    achiote paste and oil in a small saucepan over low heat. Remove from heat; set aside. Let mixture rest for 10 minutes. Oil will turn red in color.

  • Step 2 of 17
    2

    FOR FILLING:
    COMBINE
    pork, orange juice, garlic, oregano, bouillon and pepper in a large, resealable freezer bag. Shake bag and press with fingers to distribute seasoning in meat. Refrigerate for 2 hours.

  • Step 3 of 17

    REMOVE pork from marinade; reserve marinade. Dry pork meat with paper towel.

  • Step 4 of 17
    4

    FOR SOFRITO:
    HEAT
    2 tablespoons achiote oil in large skillet over medium heat. Add pork; cook for 4 minutes. Add onion, bell pepper, ajies (or red bell pepper) and cilantro. Continue to cook for 6 minutes.

  • Step 5 of 17

    STIR in reserved marinade; cover. Cook for 45 to 50 minutes or until pork is cooked through. Uncover; stir in garbanzo beans, olives, raisins and capers.

  • Step 6 of 17
    6

    FOR MASA:
    PLACE
    yautia, green bananas and plantain in food processor; pulse until smooth. Add evaporated milk; pulse to form a puree texture.

  • Step 7 of 17

    TRANSFER masa into a large mixing bowl; add bouillon and 3 tablespoons achiote oil. Stir to combine.

  • Step 8 of 17

    DRAIN and discard any excess cooking liquid from pork mixture (approximately ¼ cup).

  • Step 9 of 17

    TO ASSEMBLE:
    WIPE
    plantain leaves clean with a moist paper towel.

  • Step 10 of 17
    10

    BRUSH each leaf on one side with achiote oil.

  • Step 11 of 17
    11

    SPREAD ¼ cup masa on leaf and spread to 4 x 3-inch oval. Top with 2 1/2 tablespoons pork filling.

  • Step 12 of 17

    PLACE plantain leaf over a 12-inch-square of parchment paper.

  • Step 13 of 17
    13

    FOLD bottom of leaf, then top edge, then fold sides, forming a packet.

  • Step 14 of 17

    REPEAT with parchment paper. Tie with kitchen string. Repeat, making packets with remaining ingredients.

  • Step 15 of 17

    ADD water to bottom of a tamal steamer. Water should barely be below the rack. Boil water over medium heat.

  • Step 16 of 17

    ARRANGE tamales flat in steamer; cover with damp kitchen towel. Cover with lid; cook over medium heat for 50 to 60 minutes or until masa pulls away from the leaf.

  • Step 17 of 17

    TIP: Replace pork meat with chicken meat for a variation of this recipe. Remove meat for a vegetarian version.

Nutrition Facts

Amount Per Serving
Servings: 12 tamales
Calories 300
Calories from Fat 120
%Daily Value*
Total Fat 14g 21%
Saturated Fat 2.5g 13%
Cholesterol 25mg 9%
Sodium 490mg 21%
Total Carbohydrate 36g 12%
Dietary Fiber 3g 13%
Sugars 10g
Protein 10g
Vitamin A 6%
Vitamin C 45%
Calcium 4%
Iron 6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.
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