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Fast Food What's New

Wienerschnitzel Adds TAMALES For The Holidays

Every year, once the holiday season rolls around, our stomachs can’t help but rumble over the fresh tamales being made all around the country. Even if your family isn’t one to make the dish each year, there are still ways of getting your hands on the seasonal item.

If all traditional venues fail, there’s always the fast food route to comfort food.

Wienerschnitzel announced they’ll be serving three special shredded beef tamales this holiday.

Guests can choose from a Classic Tamale (topped with chili and cheddar cheese), a Southwest Tamale (topped with guacamole, jalapeños, chili, and cheese), or a Hatch Tamale (topped with green chilies, chili, and cheese). 

Shoot, they had us at chili.

The tamales will be available at all participating Wienerschnitzel locations beginning Oct. 30 and will be sold through the month of December.

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Recipes

Here’s The Secret To Great Tamales According To Chef Ray Garcia

If you hit up a Mexican household for Christmas, tamales are the most important, second most important, and third most important thing you’ll find at the dinner table. There’s something about unwrapping the corn husk that feels like a present in itself.

Chef Ray Garcia knows all too well the importance of making a good tamale. Garcia, the owner of Broken Spanish and B.S. Taqueria in Los Angeles, and Esquire Magazine’s 2015 Chef of The Year, taught us the essence of tamale-making.

“I have a special place in my heart for tamales when it comes to the holidays,” Garcia recalls fondly. “I have memories of making them with my mother, my father, my grandfather, and everyone coming together as a family.”

What we learned was, aside from a Mexican mother’s love, the secret to good tamales is picking up fresh, and quality ingredients.

“With tamales, what’s often overlooked, you have to have great ingredients,” Garcia said.

While it sounds obvious, Garcia thinks that little things like using non-GMO masa or responsibly raised meats, and ingredients that are in season, make the biggest difference in tamales.

ray-garcia-tamale

And if you think that sounds like some hipster nonsense, Chef Ray understands the criticism of straying from traditional recipes, but believes it all comes down to supporting creativity.

“I’d rather support and have people support the fact that we’re being creative,” Garcia said. “We’re making the best, with the ingredients that we have. Younger generations welcome that change.”

With that said, Garcia came down to the Foodbeast Kitchen and made a kick-ass recipe for Mushroom and Poblano Tamales, which is totally not what you’d expect from a Mexican dish, but again, it’s Chef Ray’s creativity helming the dish:

Ingredients

30 dried corn husks

For Tamale Filling

5 Poblano peppers

1/2 lb shiitake mushrooms, sliced ½ inch thick

2 cups white onion, julienned, divided

1/2 cup garlic, sliced thinly, divided

1/4 cup Serrano peppers, sliced

1/2 lb cremini mushrooms, cut into ½ inch cubes

2 cups heavy cream

6 tablespoons Tabasco Green Sauce

1/2 cup Monterrey Jack cheese, grated

 

For Masa

3 lbs. ground corn masa

3 tablespoons baking powder

1 tablespoon kosher salt

1 3/4 cups canola oil

 

Preparation

For husks

Put the dried husks in a large bowl or pot, cover with hot water and submerge for one hour.

 

For tamale filling

Roast the Poblanos over an open burner flame until charred and rotate throughout process so that all sides get charred. Once charred, place the peppers in a bowl, cover with plastic wrap and allow to steam in the bowl for about ten minutes. Remove the peppers from the bowl, peel off the skin, then remove the stems and seeds and cut the peppers into ¼ inch thick strips. Reserve for later.

In a large heavy bottom pan, add enough canola oil to cover the surface with a thin layer. Heat the oil over medium-high heat until it is shimmering but not yet smoking. Add the shiitake mushrooms to the pan and cook until dark golden brown. Add ¼ of the onion, garlic, and Serrano peppers and sauté for a minute, not letting the onions get too dark. Remove the mixture from the pan, season with salt, and reserve for later use.

Repeat the same process for the cremini mushrooms using ¼ of the onion, garlic, and Serrano peppers.

Place an 8 qt pot on the stove over medium heat and add enough canola oil to cover the surface with a thin layer. Heat the oil to medium heat. Once oil is shimmering, add remaining onions, garlic, and Serrano peppers and cook for 5 minutes or until translucent.

Stir in the Poblano pepper strips and the mushroom mixtures; add heavy cream and reduce heat to low. Let mixture reduce until almost all of the liquid is gone, about ten minutes.

Add Tabasco Green Sauce and season with salt as needed. Allow the mixture to cook for one more minute, then remove from the pot and refrigerate until cold.

 

For masa

In a standing mixer with a paddle attachment, add the masa, baking powder and salt; mix on low speed. Slowly add canola oil in intervals. Once oil is well incorporated, increase speed to medium for one minute to mix all ingredients. The masa should be moist, soft, and scoop-able. If needed, a small amount of water can be added.

Remove the rehydrated corn husks from water and rinse them well. Lay the husks out on a table or large work surface that has been lined with plastic wrap. Scoop about a ½ cup worth of masa into each husk and spread smooth, leaving a 1-inch gap between the masa and the end of the husk.

Sprinkle 3 tablespoons of Monterrey Jack cheese over the masa and add 3 tablespoons of tamale filling into the center of the tamale. The filling should be placed in a straight vertical line of even thickness.

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How To Turn Green Curry Carnitas Tamales Into A Pie

If you’re familiar with tamales—and we sincerely hope you are—you know that traditionally, they’re usually prepared around the holidays or for celebrating a special occasion (though we’ll gladly accept a tamale anytime, any place). What you may not be familiar with is the tamale pie.

A tamale pie has the flavorful power of a thousand regular tamales, give or take. And when you’ve got the power of a Green Curry Carnitas Tamale Pie in your hands—you’re basically a god. We’re giving you the gift of almost-immortality with this heavenly recipe for Green Curry Carnitas Tamale Pie, devised by Chef Keith Prante.

The key ingredient that really makes the dish out-of-this-world is a rich, all-natural Thai Green Curry cooking sauce from World Foods (you can find this and/or more of their sauces here).

Be careful who you share it with, though. You don’t want this kind of power getting into the wrong hands—aka, any hands other than your own!

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Photo by Pete Pham

INGREDIENTS

3 lbs Pork Butt

2 qts Dr. Pepper soda

1 onion

1 carrot

1 celery stalk

1 bay leaf

3 tbsp curry powder

2 cups cotija cheese

2 bottles of World Foods Thai Green Curry Cooking Sauce (available at Sprouts and Whole Foods)

Banana leaves

Salt and pepper

Basic Masa Dough (yield: 7 cups)

4½ cups masa harina, such as Maseca

3¾ cups cold water

1½ cups cold lard or vegetable shortening

1 tbsp kosher salt

SUPPLIES

Saran wrap

Aluminum foil

Roasting pan

Deep dish baking pan (9”x13”)

Shallow cooking sheet

Part I – Prepping the Carnitas

1) Sear well-seasoned Pork Butt in hot sauté pan until golden brown on all sides. Add in deep roasting pan with soda, veggies, and spices.

2) Place saran wrap and foil over pan and cook at 275F for 8 hours. After it is cooked remove from liquid and shred either with 2 forks or in a large table mixer with paddle attachment.

3) When fully shredded add curry sauce and stir until fully incorporated. Set in fridge until cooled.

Part II – Prepping the Masa

1) Combine masa harina and water in a large bowl and mix with your hands until ingredients are evenly incorporated and dough is moist throughout; set aside.

2) Combine lard or shortening and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and beat on high speed until shiny and white in color, about 2 minutes.

3) Reduce speed to medium high and add dough in handfuls, letting it mix in before adding more, until all the dough has been added, about 2 minutes. Continue beating until ingredients are well combined and a smooth, soft dough has formed, about 1 minute more. Cover and refrigerate at least 1 hour or up to 2 days before using.

Part III – Cooking the Pie

1) Preheat oven to 315F. Cover the bottom of the baking pan with banana leaves and add half the masa putting it on the walls of the pan.

2) Add cooled pork and spread evenly across the pan. Use the rest of the masa to cover the pork then cover the masa with remaining banana leaves.

3) Place 9”x13” pan on baking sheet and place water in baking sheet. Cover with saran wrap and foil for 20 minutes.

4) Remove leaves cover in cheese and let rest for 5 minutes and serve.

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Hit-Or-Miss

That’s One Pot Tamale – And This California Dispensary Is Giving It Away For Free

pottamales

You should totally take a hit of this tamale.

That’s what they’re saying at the ABC Cooperative, a medical marijuana dispensary in Garden Grove, Calif., where every Friday is “free tamale day.” At least, that’s what I’m guessing they’re saying. I for one have never stepped foot in a marijuana dispensary and would never ever associate with anyone who would frequent such an abominable institution.

Supposing I did though, I’d imagine the prospect of getting free Pineapple Pot flavored tamales every Friday would be pretty damn exciting.

Made off-site, the tamales were first introduced by the company due to high customer demand and are available only to those with medical marijuana cards – along with the regular, non-medicated Chicken, Cheese and Pork flavors, which I’m assuming are available to anyone.

Did I mention they’re free?

H/T Remezcla + PicThx OCWeekly

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Hit-Or-Miss

Too Corny? There’s a Tamale Perfume Now

“I could go wild and try to create a ‘pollo’ one or an ‘al pastor’ one,” perfumer Zorayda Ortiz tells DNAinfo Chicago, referring to a chicken or pork tamale scented oil she’s thinking of designing. Honey, just having a plain tamale scented one is bad enough.

Fortunately the first two ideas seem to be just that – ideas – but that third one. That third one, titled simply “Tamale,” is part of Ortiz’s newest perfume line and attempts to capture the culture of the Chicago’s Pilsen neighborhood.

Now, like with the sushi perfume we discovered a while back, it’s hard to imagine what effect any sort of food-inspired scent could have on a person aside from making them hungry. But if culinary scents are here to stay, especially those inspired by specific locations, it’s not too much to ask for an In-N-Out Secret Sauce scent for us So Cal peeps, is it?

Didn’t think so.

H/T Huff Po, PixThx Tavallai

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Fast Food

Wienerschnitzel Plans to Introduce a Chili Cheese Tamale, Probably Around Thanksgiving Time

If you’re a fan of Wienerschnitzel products that aren’t hot dog based, like the off-the-wall Sea Dogs those guys produce around Lenten season, you might want to take note of the restaurant’s latest teaser: a Chili Cheese Tamale.

The announcement came via an early evening Facebook status, where the Wienerschnitzel social media team pointed to a November release date for the new product. While no word is yet available on why they are debuting a product shot for an item that won’t be on the menu for another 3 months, we do know the contents wil include a beef tamale topped with a layer of chili and shredded cheddar.

So we’ll ask a similar question the Wienerschnitzel folks asked of their audience, are you looking forward to trying this fast food abomination come November?

Categories
Cravings

Craving: The Humdinger

A scrumptuous corn-roll tamale covered with chili, topped with onions, peppers and cheese all between barely breathable hot dog bun. Eat on! (Thx TIWYF)

Categories
Cravings

Craving: The Mother-In-Law

I know what your thinking and I would too, but get your mind out of the gutter. Think corn tamale chili dog style. The tamale is placed in a poppy seed hot dog bun, covered in delicious chili, and topped off with some onions and peppers. All I need on the side is some fries and a beer. (PicThx ReneG)