2011 New Year's Eve started with sunny-cold weather, which was the opposite of the deluge of rain we received last year shorting out the electrical equipment (hence dancing in the rain outside the tent in 2010!) We started with a nice walk through the neighborhood, allowing us to take in the holiday decorations without the holiday crowds.
It was a wonderful way to start the holiday weekend and new year just strolling through the quiet streets, while taking care of errands.
Since we didn't have plans to meet up with friends until after 10pm we took our time and our afternoon of walking errands turned into a 2-hour-post-holiday-get-your-body-moving-or-you-will-freeze-but-its-nice-I'm-freezing-with-you kind of afternoon. Plus we knew we tonight we will be stuffing ourselves with tamales!
Our good friends had invited us to a tradition they had wanted to re-visit for years and this year was going to be the year of the tamalero! We arrived as the first test batch was being pulled from the steamer. This was a holiday tamalero in the truest sense in that we brought over all our holiday leftovers to make tamales with.
We got the masa ready for our first batch of tamales made with our left over mashed potatoes, a bag of frozen peas and carrots and a special chili powder mix.
As soon as those were wrapped up and placed in the steamer we moved on to chicken mole, from our Christmas Chicken Mole dinner and Albert's perfected carnitas.
Once they were in the steamer we ready to toast and ring in the new year! We quickly lit fireworks, toasted and ran back inside to warm back up and wait anxiously for our tamales. Not a bad way to ring in the new year - going home with bags of tamales for the freezer, family and tasty new year day snack!
So, is it easy to make tamales? Goodness yes! The secret is to use some sort of lard or fat like bacon grease or straight up lard, you can totally feel the difference in the masa mix!