No ImageVegetarian Banana Leaf Tamales

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  1. Michelle Ayala

    Thanks so much for sharing this recipe. I did it the night before last and they came out terrific. I just love serving these with extra vegetable filling on top. So yummy! (And easy.) Happy New Year!!


  2. Marcia

    I just returned from a month in Guatemala. One week I stayed with a Guatemalan grandmother, Lidia. She spoke no English yet we still had a wonderful time cooking together on her little ranchito near Coban. We made delicious tamales with rice instead of corn masa. We used two layers of large green leaves, each different and neither banana. There we were able to buy the leaves fresh in the outdoor markets. I was trying to refresh my memory of that recipe when I landed on this recipe. I haven’t tried these yet, but I have to say the rice tamales are the best I’ve tasted in my 50 years of loving the Mexican cuisine of my native California and travels in Mexico. I’m happy to find the blogs here. I’m going to turn my search to the asian glutenous rice and see if I can refresh my memories from there. If it works I’ll share my results here… the first rice tamales on line perhaps?

  3. Crystal

    Thanks for the wonderful recipe. I made these tamales using the addition of the shortening to the masa. They were delicious!! Also the steps were very simple to complete, but time consuming. It took me about 5 hours from start to finish (without steaming), but Im sure I took a few breaks! I made these the night before, wrapped in saran wrap and refrigerated until the next day. I prepared them for guests who liked them so much they took a bag home with them. Thanks again for a great recipe that I will continue to make again and again.


  4. Renata

    Dear Elise:

    I would like to give you my very humble advise…
    The way you are doing tamales is ok, however you must notice they are a little dry (the masa)… traditional tamales recipes have lard as a key ingredient, if you don’t want to use it you can use shortening.
    The ratio should be 1 kilo of maseca and 1/2 kilo of shortening. The way you prepare it is beating the shortening on high speed until it is light and fluffy, then kneading it into the masa already hydrated.

    My grandmother cuts the shortening in the maseca and after that she adds stock or water to the masa. Beating is the ‘modern’ way to do it and you will not end having that uncomfortable feeling of grease on your palate.

    I highly recommend you to try this recipe again adding the shortening, you’ll be surprised how moist and shiny will your tamales turn out, they even taste better. I am so glad to read that you are not a ‘light’ or ‘low fat’ cooking person… it takes all the flavor out of the food… and consistency too, as you will find if you try this way of making tamales.

    Thank you for your wonderful blog, from Mexico City.

  5. kathy

    I found your site after running out of corn husks here in Quintana Roo (Mexico). Luckilly, we have bananas growing everywhere. I’ve always seen the flat square type of tamal with banana leaves but didn’t know exactly how to tie them. From my experience today, I found you can roll them very similar to corn husks and not tie them (but they won’t be square packages). Without your site I’m not sure I would have had the patience to keep trying to figure it out.

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