Tamales with Chicken Recipe

From Dorothy McNett's Recipe Book.

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See Also: Main Dishes

Tamales with Chicken

From Dorothy McNett's recipes at www.dorothymcnett.com. Substitute cooked shredded pork or beef for variations, and adjust the spices and salsa to your desires.

2 boneless skinned chicken breasts
1/2 cup salsa, your choice of hotness
sea salt and freshly ground pepper
1/8 teaspoon cumin seeds
hot paprika or chile powder
fresh or dried corn husks
masa dough, see recipe

If using dried corn husks, soak them in water as directed on the package, 2-3 hours or overnight. If using fresh corn, simply peel the husks away from the corn, wash off the silk. Use the biggest husks, but save the smaller ones for "patching". If desired, cut off the fresh corn and use a little with the chicken when filling the tamales. Otherwise, set the fresh corn kernels aside and use the in a fresh salad. Cut each chicken breast in half and arrange the 4 pieces on a glass or ceramic plate in a circle fashion, with the thickest parts to the outside. Drizzle with about 2 tablespoons of the salsa, sprinkle with salt, pepper, cumin seeds and paprika. Cover loosely with a piece of waxed paper. Microwave on high 2 minutes. Check for doneness, adding 1-3 minutes more as needed. Cool slightly, and then tear apart to shred the chicken, adding the remaining salsa to make a flavorful shredded chicken consistency, but do not add so much salsa that the mixture gets runny. Pat the corn husks dry with paper towels, then spread each one with about 2 tablespoons of the masa dough, creating a mass of dough about 4 inches long. If a corn husk is not large enough for a tamale, then take 2 and overlap them before spreading on the dough. Top masa with about 1 tablespoon of the filling, spreading it out lengthwise a bit. Fold one of the long ends into the center, and then the other long end. Bring up the bottom and then tuck under the top. Stack the tamales in a steamer basket and steam for about 35-40 minutes over gently boiling water. Do not let the water touch the bottom of the steamer basket. Allow to stand about 5 minutes and serve.

Recipe created 2006-07-24.

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