Saturday, January 2, 2016

Shrimp and Roasted Garlic Tamales

Last month we were able to get away to Las Vegas for a few days to see Brooks & Dunn and Reba in concert at Caesar's Palace. That gave me the opportunity to make reservations at a few celebrity chef restaurants.  One night we had dinner at Giada and the other night we ate at Bobby's Flay's Mesa Grill.  We had eaten at Mesa Grill once before and thoroughly enjoyed it.  The second time didn't disappoint us either.  For an appetizer we each had the shrimp and roasted garlic tamale. We enjoyed it so much we went back the next afternoon to have a margarita and share the appetizer (their margaritas are amazing, too! ) At that point I knew I wanted to try these at home so bought his cookbook.
We had another couple over for New Year's Eve so these were on our menu. They were good, very good, but not as spicy as I remembered the ones we had at the restaurant.  Next time I will add some chilies or red pepper to jazz them up some.

This was my first attempt at making any sort of tamale.  The filling is a soft filling, when you open the corn husk after baking it loosely spreads out. Traditional tamales have very firm masa fillings. These weren't hard to make, just took time and a lot of dishes! But I had all afternoon so did it in steps.  The next time I make them it will be when we are entertaining more people.  It was a lot of work for just the four of us! 

Here is the recipe .  Don't be intimidated by its length, many of the steps can be done ahead of time.

The part I had a hard time with was tying up the ends of the tamales.  The recipe calls for using strips of the corn husks.  Most of mine would break as I went to tie them.  So I grabbed my ball of twine and used that instead. Maybe not as pretty and authentic but this was better than the tamales falling apart!
The tamales have a loose, corn and cornmeal filling.

Ready to be steamed.


  1. Those look delicious...I love shrimp, but have never thought to put them in tamales...I may have to give it a try!

    1. They were very good, but making a trip to Vegas to have them at the restaurant was better! Ha ha! Thanks for stopping by!