Mr. Tamale?

Mr. Tamale?

Never really satisfied with drip coffee makers, whenever a new model, or different design came out – I bought it. Over the years I’ve bought a lot of coffee makers. I mean… currently, there are 9 sitting on the work table out in the garage, and – that’s only counting the ones that are still working. With each pot came a lifetime supply of coffee filters which I dutifully wedged into the gadget drawer with the cacophony of measuring spoons, extra lids and filters… stacks of filters. I have since switched to the coffee pot of my youth – a vacuum pot – and will probably never return to the antiquated Mr. Coffee brew pot thingy on the counter-top.
So now … I have all these filters. and as I’ve never been one to throw something away that might – sometime in the distant future – be useful, I’ve kept them…
in the gadget drawer…
… blocking out the light.
I had a hankering to make some tamales the other day and went to dig my package of corn husks out of the back of the gadget drawer and came face to face with the filter stash. Three packs immediately sprang out onto the floor. Reaching in, I dislodged another 12 packs and I still wasn’t even 1/2 way to the back.
It wasn’t worth the effort, and I was losing interest in the tamales anyway…just too much work. I sat down on the kitchen floor beside the neatly nestled stacks of fluted paper, when inspiration struck… what if I made the tamales round, and let the flutes fold in and wrap the package….
I snatched up a handful of paper and got to work.
Coffee Filter Tamales
I’ve used plain, roasted pork as the filler meat. I usually like to season the masa as opposed to the filling. But, feel free to season the meat and omit the cumin and chili powder in the dough.
Serves 6
2 Cups Masa Flour
1 Teaspoon Cumin Seed – Toasted
1 Tablespoon Chili Powder
1 Jar Pitted Green Olives – (You can use canned Garbanzo Beans, alternately)
1/4 Cup Lard
1 Teaspoon Salt
2 Cups Chicken Stock or water
2 Cups Shredded Pork or Chicken
Coffee Filters
Steamer Basket
Large Mixing Bowl 
  • In the bowl, place all the spices, masa flour, lard and stock
  • Mix until thoroughly combined and set aside for 15 minutes
  • Place a large pot on high heat with about 3″ of water
  • Bring to a boil and reduce to medium low
  • Open the filter flat on a work surface and spread 1 Tablespoon of masa dough into the flat center part of the filter
  • Add 1 Tablespoon of shredded pork
  • Top the pork with 2 Olives or 2 Garbanzo beans
  • Place another tablespoon of masa on top of the stack and carefully fold the flutes down onto the tamale to create a disk
  • Flip the package over and set into a second filter, repeat the fold
  • Place the packets into a steamer basket and place in the heated pot
  • Cover and steam the tamales for 1 hour on medium heat – Check the water levels occasionally to make sure the pot doesn’t dry out.
  • Serve immediately with Ranchero Sauce, Salsa Verde, or Tomato Salsa


7 thoughts on “Mr. Tamale?

  1. What an innovative use for something we all have piling up in our kitchens!! The tamales look great as well!! I can now stop hunting for corn husks out of season up here in the North! Horay!

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