4 pounds boneless chuck roast ( or use any meat, I use pork shoulder)
4 cloves garlic
3 (8 ounce) packages dried corn husks
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 teaspoon ground cumin
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons chopped fresh oregano
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 quart red chili sauce
salt to taste
3 cups lard
1 tablespoon salt
9 cups masa harina
1.Place beef and garlic in a large pot( I just cook the meat in my crockpot or pressure cooker). Cover with cold water and bring to a boil over high heat. As soon as water boils, reduce heat to a simmer and cover pot. Let simmer for 3 1/2 hours, until beef is tender and shreds easily. When beef is done, remove from pot, reserving 5 cups cooking liquid and discarding garlic. Allow meat to cool slightly, and shred finely with forks.
Add 1 quart of red chili sauce,and mix well. Add spices, adjust to your taste.
2.Meanwhile, place corn husks in a large container and cover with warm water. Allow to soak for 3 hours, until soft and pliable. May need to weight down with an inverted plate and a heavy can.
4.Place lard ( I`ve tried using Crisco, just aren`t as tender or tasty with it) and salt in a large mixing bowl. Whip with an electric mixer on high speed until fluffy. Add masa harina and beat at low speed until well mixed. Pour in reserved cooking liquid a little at a time until mixture is the consistency of soft cookie dough. Beat until a pinch will float when dropped into a cup of cold water.
6.Drain water from corn husks. One at a time, flatten out each husk, with the narrow end facing you, and spread approximately 2 tablespoons masa mixture onto the top 2/3 of the husk. Spread about 1 tablespoon of meat mixture down the middle of the masa. Roll up the corn husk starting at one of the long sides. Fold the narrow end of the husk onto the rolled tamale and tie with a piece of corn husk .Now,I don`t measure,I just grab a glob of masa,spread on the husk, top with some meat,roll.
If husks aren`t avaiable, you can cut pieces of aluminin foil, and use them. Not quite as taatsy, but do work.
7.Place tamales in a steamer basket. Steam over boiling water for approximately one hour, until masa is firm and holds its shape. Make sure steamer does not run out of water. Serve immediately, allowing each person to unwrap their own tamales. Allow any leftovers (still in husks) to cool, uncovered, in the refrigerator
They are done when the masa pulls away from the husk. They freeze well. To reheat,place in steamer for a bit, or wrap individual ones in a moist paper towel, and nuke for 2-3 minutes.