Deglet Noor dates have a less sweet profile than your typical Medjool Date Fruit; which makes them perfect as ingredients in savory diches. This dish uses Deglet Noor dates and smoked jalapenos to create a slightly sweet, kind of spicy, and wholly delicious meal for the whole family to enjoy. If you want a new twist on tamales, this is the one for you.
Yield: 40 Tamales
• 1 Cups Clarified Unsalted Butter
• 1 Quart Whole Milk
• 1⁄2 Cups Granulated Sugar
• 3⁄4 Cups Deglet Noor Date Puree (recipe included)
• 25 Deglet Noor Dates (juliene)
• 1 Pound Deglet Noor Dates (pitted)
• 12 Fluid ounces Boiling Water (as needed)
• 2 Chickens (whole)
• 1 Onion (large, rough chopped)
• 2 Carrots (medium, rough chopped)
• 3 Celery (rough chopped)
• 1 Tablespoon Coriander Seeds
• 1 Pinch Sprig Fresh Thyme
• 4 Clove Garlic
• 2 Bay Leaves
• 10 Peppercorn
• 8 Chipotle Peppers (dry)
• 3 Green Onion (sliced thing)
• 1 1⁄2 Tablespoon Cilantro (chopped)
• Pinch of Salt & Pepper (to taste)
• 40 Corn Husks (softened, to wrap tamales)
While the chickens are cooling, heat 1 cup of the reserved chicken stock and add the dried chipotle peppers. Allow them to steep until they are soft and re-hydrated. Once re-hydrated, remove the stems and seeds and chop fine.
Complete the filling: Once the chickens are cool, putt the chicken meat into shreds and discard all the bones, skin and cartilage. Place all the pulled chicken meat in a mixing bowl, add the chopped chipotle pepper, sliced green onions, and chopped cilantro. Mix to incorporate. Add a little of the chipotle chicken stock if mixture feels too dry. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Reserve until ready to assemble tamales.
Assemble the Tamales: Place softened corn husks on countertop, scoop about 3 Tbs. of the Date Masa on the center of the husk. Using a spatula spread the masa evenly to cover the center of the softened corn husk, approximately a 3 inch by 3 inch square in the center. Once the masa is spread, add approximately 2 tbs. of the chicken mixture to the center of the masa. Roll the tamale by folding one end of the corn husk over the filling an droll until the end. Fold one end of the corn husk under the bottom and tie the other end using stands of the corn husk. Once all of the tamales are assembled, rolled and tied, place in a perforated pan and steam for 30 minutes. Once cooked through, remove from steamer and let them rest for a couple of minutes. Unwrap the tamale; it should be firm with no raw masa.