I absolutely love chicken tamales and I have fond memories of going to a neighborhood tamales restaurant with my Dad and getting one of each type. It was a fun little tradition we would do when it was just the two of us grabbing a quick bite to eat. Ever since going on the FODMAP diet, if I see tamales at restaurants or prepared to-go at stores, I always look at the ingredients and immediately get disappointed as there is always onion and garlic in the mix. Don’t think that deters me as I have my own collection of FODMAP chicken recipes and I knew I could make these work.
The first time Katherine (Twinkie) and I made tamales together it went fairly smoothly until it came to the actual cooking process. Who knew you have to STEAM the tamales with a LID! You can stop laughing as it’s as embarrassing as it sounds but as these were supposed to be eaten for dinner we ended up having to eat dessert first and around 10 PM eat the tamales after we figured out what the problem was.
This time around we were prepared. We had the pot, lid and steamer and were not messing around. Thank goodness we were able to redeem ourselves this time around because our determination was REAL! I absolutely love this recipe from Katherine as it has the perfect amount of spice and heat. These are great to make with friend and family as it’s fun to assemble and do while catching up around the table. We had our husbands add the ties to the tamales as we stuffed them. We made about 60 tamales, split them up and frozen a bunch as well. Hopefully the frozen ones will last me long enough until the next time around! What’s your favorite type of tamale? I would love to hear!Print
These tamales are a labor of love but make for great gifts or to keep frozen in the freezer!
For Night Before:
- 5 lbs chicken, bone-in and skin-on (for flavor), about 60% breast and 40% thigh
- 2 Tbsp vegetable oil (canola, grape seed, olive)
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- ½ tsp ground black pepper
- 60 dried corn husks (these are sold in packages of approximately 100 – 120)
The Day of:
- 6 cups chicken stock (FODMAP safe)
- 6 tsp ancho chili powder (divided into 2 tsp and 4 tsp portions)
- 2 tsp dried, crushed chipotle chili
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1 tsp dried cilantro leaves
- 1 – 2 tsp kosher salt
- 8 cups instant masa (we use Maseca as it is naturally gluten-free; look for the white package in order to avoid gums)
- 2 cups palm shortening at room temperature (we use Spectrum or Nutiva)
For Night Before:
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
- Onto a sheet pan, place raw chicken, brush both sides with oil, and season with salt and pepper. Place pan into oven, roast chicken for up to 30 minutes or until 165 degrees internal temperature.
- Remove chicken from oven, turn off oven, and allow chicken to cool on sheet pan for 30 minutes. Add to large bowl, tightly cover, and place into refrigerator overnight.
- Into a second large bowl, place corn husks. Fill bowl with water. Cover with plastic wrap. Leave at room temperature overnight.
For Day Of:
- Drain corn husks. Using clean paper towels, gently dry each husk on both sides and set aside onto a plate. Cover with clean, damp kitchen towel.
- Place medium saucepan onto stove and turn on stove to medium-high heat. Add stock, warm to a simmer (do not boil) and reduce heat to low while you prep.
- Remove chicken from refrigerator. Remove all skin and bones (discard or save for new stock). Shred meat into a large bowl and season with 2 tsp chili powder, crushed chipotle chili, cumin, oregano, cilantro, and ½ – 1 tsp salt to taste. Remember, this chicken has been cooked, so it is OK to sample it to make certain you like the flavors. Add up to ½ cup of warmed stock to moisten meat (do not make it runny). Mix well with hands or fork. Set aside.
- Into another large bowl, add masa, shortening, remaining 4 tsp chili powder, and ½ – 1 tsp salt to taste. Using hand-held pastry blender, two knives, or your hands, gently combine and break apart shortening. Slowly add up to 5 cups of warm stock until dough is smooth and spreadable (not crumbly). Knead dough with hands. Taste to be certain it is flavorful. Cover masa dough with clean, damp kitchen towel. Set aside.
- Take one or two corn husks and shred into long strips. These will be used to fasten tamales so that their wrappings stay in place. Place strips onto another plate, and cover with a clean, damp kitchen towel. Set aside.
- Locate a large pot that fits a steamer basket. Fill pot with water to a ½ inch to an inch of space between basket and the water. Place pot and fitted basked onto stove top, high heat, and bring water to a boil while you assemble tamales.
- Onto clean counter top, lay out your work station: Corn husks, masa dough, seasoned chicken, corn husk strips, large clean plate to place completed tamales onto.
- Spread corn husk flat, add 1 – 2 Tbsp masa dough to center of husk spreading dough flat with your hands to about ⅛ inch thick rectangle (leave a border of husk of ½ inch on sides and 2 inches along top and bottom). Add 1 Tbsp chicken into middle, into a cigar-like shape. Gently (think soft thoughts for this step) pull sides of husk to envelope masa and chicken to form a little tamal. Using your hands, daintily press masa seam to seal tamal. Gingerly fold top and bottom of husk inward to cover the tamal. Next, carefully roll husk from one side to the other, encasing tamal into its own corn husk blanket, tucking in any stray corners of husk as you wrap (think making a burrito). Take one husk strip, tie a little belt with a knot around tamal to secure. Repeat this process about a million times (worth it!).
- Place tamales into steamer basket, standing upwards, leaning slightly toward the sides of the basket, seam side facing inner sides of pot. Do not allow boiling water to touch basket or tamales; tamales can’t swim (full disclosure: a few tamales were harmed in the making of this recipe). Steam, COVERED for 1.5 to 2 hours or until dough is dark golden, harder, and not doughy. Taste one tamale to be certain the batch is done (it will cut with knife cleanly).
Recipe by Deliberate Fare.
Keywords: low fodmap dinner, fodmap chicken recipes, fodmap tamales