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    You are in: Home / Community Forums / Mexican / Tex-Mex / Southwest United States / Tamale Wrappers...Parchment Paper?
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    Tamale Wrappers...Parchment Paper?

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    Bruce Benjamin
    Mon Dec 10, 2007 2:51 pm
    Semi-Experienced "Sous Chef" Poster
    I'm glad you gave it a try, Dustbunni. I still haven't got around to my side by side test using both parchment and corn husks. Unless someone eats the same recipe frequently enough to detect subtle differences in flavor I think that a side by side test is the only real way to tell just how much flavor the corn husks impart. It's easy to fool your taste buds into believing something tastes one way or another. If you happen to do a comparison please report back and I'll do the same. Thanks for posting.

    Bruce
    Dustbunni
    Wed Dec 12, 2007 1:04 pm
    Food.com Groupie
    Here's an update on paper wrapped tamales:

    After polishing off about 1/2 the tamales, I put the leftover tamales in the fridge. I served them the next day with a salad and a little sour cream on the side. Delicious!

    After the chilling time, the masa didn't stick to the parchment.

    I'm still going with corn husks for the holiday tamales, but I am very pleased with how the paper wrapped ones turned out. icon_wink.gif
    Dustbunni
    Wed Dec 12, 2007 1:32 pm
    Food.com Groupie
    Bruce Benjamin wrote:
    I'm glad you gave it a try, Dustbunni. I still haven't got around to my side by side test using both parchment and corn husks. Unless someone eats the same recipe frequently enough to detect subtle differences in flavor I think that a side by side test is the only real way to tell just how much flavor the corn husks impart. It's easy to fool your taste buds into believing something tastes one way or another. If you happen to do a comparison please report back and I'll do the same. Thanks for posting.

    Bruce


    Bruce, I agree that a side by side test is the only real test.
    I'm going to go ahead and try it now since I've got to make a zillion tamales before December 20th.

    I've got more pork filling ready to go in the fridge (and beef and chicken with green chili.) I'll do the test with the pork since that's what I've got the most of. I should be ready to share by the end of the week. icon_smile.gif Terri.
    Dustbunni
    Sun Dec 16, 2007 12:40 am
    Food.com Groupie
    Well, I did it yesterday. I made two batches of red pork tamales--one wrapped in corn husks and one in paper. (46 total).

    I used the same meat and sauce for each batch. I used fresh masa and made a double recipe so that everything would be exactly the same.

    I steamed them seperately. I did the paper ones first. I let all of the tamales rest overnight.

    DH and I had tamales for lunch today. Dh didn't notice a flavor difference. I sort of expected that. However, I really didn't notice difference either. I expected to, but I honestly did not.

    Okay, I didn't resort to blindfolds or approach the experiment quite like America's test kitchen might. But I'm satisfied that paper wraps are just fine and if there is a flavor difference, DH and I don't taste it.

    All that's important to me is that I and my family enjoy our food. I'll still use cornhusks for special occasions. There's nothing quite like a basket of tamales on our holiday buffet table.
    cookiedog
    Sun Dec 16, 2007 1:38 am
    Food.com Groupie
    Do you have a picture of how you wrapped the ones in paper?

    I cooked 76 lbs. of pork today, made loads of chile, and masa and tomorrow my family is going to get together to wrap the tamales. If I run out of corn husks I'll pull out my parchment!
    Dustbunni
    Sun Dec 16, 2007 9:30 pm
    Food.com Groupie
    I didn't photograph the paper wraps but here's a description.
    I used Tampico brand paper tamale wrappers. They are 8 3/4" square. I folded them sort of like a gift wrapping.

    I put the masa in the middle of the square about 2" down from the top. I left about the same space at the bottom.

    I spread the masa about 2" wide.

    I put the filling in the middle of the masa. I turned the masa (and paper) over itself to cover the the filling.

    I made three or four small folds from left to right to make sure the packets stayed closed. Now there's a rectangle with the top and bottom ends opened.

    I folded the top down two turns and stapled it.
    I folded the bottom up two turns and stapled it.

    When I was ready to serve them, I took some scissors and cut off the ends and staples, that way I don't have to worry that anyone swallowing a staple.

    I searched the web looking for ways to fold tamales in parchment and couldn't find anything. So, I just folded in a way that made sense to me at the time.

    I hope this helps.

    Good Heavens, did I read that right? You cooked 76 pounds of pork. icon_eek.gif icon_eek.gif icon_eek.gif icon_razz.gif
    cookiedog
    Thu Dec 27, 2007 1:16 am
    Food.com Groupie
    Thank you for your detailed instructions Dustbunni. I ended up having more than enough husks so I just used those. I have never seen the parchment squares before but in the future I'll make my own if I ever run out of husks.

    the 76 lbs. of meat ended up making 588 tamales.

    Later in the week I made sweet tamales, tamales with chile verde and chicken, and chicken and vegetable tamales- which my BF laughed at when he first saw them and then could not stop eating them. Each night for 4 days I went to bed at 1:30 am. because I was making and steaming tamales. My DBF thinks I have a sickness icon_rolleyes.gif He might be right but there is just something about making tamales that relaxes me.
    cookiedog
    Thu Dec 27, 2007 1:18 am
    Food.com Groupie
    Thank you for your detailed instructions Dustbunni. I ended up having more than enough husks so I just used those. I have never seen the parchment squares before but in the future I'll make my own if I ever run out of husks.

    the 76 lbs. of meat ended up making 588 tamales.

    Later in the week I made Sweet Tamales, tamales with chile verde and chicken, and chicken and vegetable tamales- which my BF laughed at when he first saw them and then could not stop eating them. Each night for 4 days I went to bed at 1:30 am. because I was making and steaming tamales. My DBF thinks I have a sickness icon_rolleyes.gif He might be right but there is just something about making tamales that relaxes me.
    cookiedog
    Thu Dec 27, 2007 1:19 am
    Food.com Groupie
    Thank you for your detailed instructions Dustbunni. I ended up having more than enough husks so I just used those. I have never seen the parchment squares before but in the future I'll make my own if I ever run out of husks.

    the 76 lbs. of meat ended up making 588 tamales.

    Later in the week I made Sweet Tamales, Tamales De Pollo Con Chile Verde- Green Chile Chicken Tamales and chicken and vegetable tamales- which my BF laughed at when he first saw them and then could not stop eating them. Each night for 4 days I went to bed at 1:30 am. because I was making and steaming tamales. My DBF thinks I have a sickness icon_rolleyes.gif He might be right but there is just something about making tamales that relaxes me.
    Dustbunni
    Thu Dec 27, 2007 3:15 pm
    Food.com Groupie
    Cookiedog, Thanks for posting the sweet tamale recipe. I saved it and I'm going to try it, but not right away. I've done all the tamale making I can stand for awhile.

    Your recipe looks so good. I'm sure it's the rum, butter and coconut milk that hooked me.

    I didn't make any sweet ones this year although I'd intended to. I ran out of time. I've had sweet tamales with pineapple and sweet potato. I thought they were good but not special. A good yam casserole would be just as satisfying without all the work.
    Chef #708726
    Sun Dec 30, 2007 4:08 pm
    Newbie "Fry Cook" Poster
    smart & final had paper husks they worked great you don't even have to soak to use

    Fri Oct 03, 2008 2:41 pm
    Newbie "Fry Cook" Poster
    Bruce: A lot of people are using parchment paper as a substitute to corn husk because of the very reason you've mentioned. There are traditionalist who insist on the corn husks, and there is no way to convince them that there is no difference in the taste of a tamale whether using corn husk or parchment paper. I might have a bias against corn husk because I specialize in supplying tamale paper, and over the past 25 years I haven't found anyone using paper who says it changes the taste of the tamale. I think it's resistants to change. There are two types of parchment paper used for making tamales; one is the inside sheet has a silicone treatment and the outside sheet is untreated. Some tamale makers use the corn husk along with the outside wrap if their selling individual tamales, but most use both the inside and outside sheets for a consist product that doesn't stick. Let me know if you have any other questions about using parchment paper verses corn husk.

    George
    Marcie H
    Sun Dec 21, 2008 2:19 pm
    Regular "Line Cook" Poster
    I have always had a hard time spreading the masa on the husks. Finally, I bought a plastic caulking trowel that you use for spreading caulking or plaster. I had my husband show me how to use it and he did such a good job, I gave him the job. Now tamales are no chore!
    Pepina Rae
    Tue Dec 23, 2008 7:41 pm
    Experienced "Head Chef" Poster
    George, I make tamales to sell. I am looking for a good paper that doesn't stick. Although, most of my customers would prefer the traditional corn husks, I have been having quite a problem with sticking. Telling the difference between the silky side and the rough side sometimes is impossible and is time consuming. To throw out all of the questionable ones is cost prohibitive. Please contact me.
    Thanks,
    Lucy
    lucy@nuawlinscatering.com
    Chef #1150184
    Thu Jan 29, 2009 6:49 pm
    Newbie "Fry Cook" Poster
    I use the parchment tamale wrappers that look like the corn husks and it is so much easier! They are non-stick coated, so the masa doesn't stick.

    If people want the taste of corn husk, they can throw some into the water when cooking.

    They were at Smart & Final, but I can't find them there anymore. I found them at WALSHPAPER.COM

    Ben icon_idea.gif
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