Guest Post: Smoky Fiesta Black Bean Tamales

Welcome to the highlight of my week away!

Somer Vedge, of the soon-to-be World Famous Vedged Out, was kind enough to do a guest post for me of her Smoky Fiesta Black Bean Tamales, and they look amazing. Start her crazy-good post here, and then click the link to carry it on right through to Enjoy!

Tastes of Summer: Smoky Fiesta Black Bean Tamales

Somer, Somer Vedge, Smoky Fiesta Black Bean Tamales, vegan tmales, black bean tamales, tamales,

If you’re one of those people who’ve never made tamales…. Well, what on earth have you been waiting for? It’s time my friends.

The process is easier than it looks, the majority of the time goes into steaming these babies. Everything else comes together in a cinch. If you can wrap a burrito with the ends tucked in, you can make tamales.


Smoky Fiesta Black Bean Tamales

  • 2 cups masa harina
  • 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 sweet onion, diced small
  • 1 large carrot, diced small
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced small
  • 1 can diced green chiles or 1 Anaheim pepper, diced
  • 2 minced garlic cloves
  • 1 T. baking powder
  • 1 1/2 t. sea salt
  • 1 T. nutritional yeast
  • 1-2 t. liquid smoke (depending on your preference)
  • 1 t. red chili flakes
  • 1 t. mesquite powder (optional)
  • 1 C. cashews (soaked for 4-6 hours if you don’t have a power blender)
  • 1 1/4 C. water
  • 20 dried corn husks

Method: Place the corn husks in a large bowl of hot water. Cover with a plate so that the husks stay submerged. Next, make cashew cream, combine cashews and liquid smoke with the water and blend until completely smooth. Set aside. Heat a non-stick sauté pan over medium heat, add onion, carrot, black beans, bell pepper and Anaheim peppers (if using). I used a dry pan (you may need to add a bit of broth or water to your pan if it starts to stick) and stirred occasionally until the onions were translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic cloves and red chili flakes and heat for a minute or two more. Set aside. In a medium bowl, combine masa harina, baking powder, sea salt, mesquite powder and nutritional yeast with a wire whisk. Add the vegetables (including the canned green chilies) to the masa harina and stir to evenly distribute. Now add the cashew cream and mix all to combine a nice moist dough. If dough seems too dry, add water a Tablespoon at a time. Using a 1/3 cup measure, scoop the tamale dough onto a corn husk. Roll up tightly like a burrito, tucking in the ends as you go. My batch made 15 tamales, but a few of my corn husks were small, so I needed to use 2 husks to get it to roll up properly (which is why I included 20 husks). Next, put a steaming basket inside a large lidded pot, add water, making sure the water doesn’t rise above the bottom of the steaming basket. Heat on stove until water is boiling. Add the tamales carefully to the steaming basket so they don’t unravel. Reduce heat to medium-low and steam, with the pot lid on, for 45-50 minutes. Tamales are ready when the dough is firm and holds together. Remove from heat and let cool for 5-10 minutes before serving.

Tamale Collage

I served our tamales with Mimi Kirk’s Raw Sour Cream, Shira’s Red Pepper Cheese Sauce and my Sriracha and Olive Salsa Fresca (using spanish olives this round instead of black).

stack o tamales

~ by VegansHusband on July 15, 2013.

22 Responses to “Guest Post: Smoky Fiesta Black Bean Tamales”

  1. I see black beans and liquid smoke in the ingredient list, but don’t see them in the directions. Am I missing something?

  2. I have never had tamales because I am boring and british and we eat boring things…. if I can find the leaves I will give these a go!

    • I assure you, you are not boring! I also have never had tamales, and if it weren’t for Somer and her awesomeness, I wouldn’t have the guts to try these either. However, I feel like anything she makes is a personal challenge, so… here I go!

    • Alexander, I’ve heard you can use banana leaves, I reckon even common aluminum foil would work. Corn husks are just traditional. Of course, you can buy corn at the grocery store and use the fresh husks as well. Oh and you are anything but boring my British friend! 🙂

  3. I would use baking paper to make these because aside from that pathetic aphid ridden husks that I manage to produce in my corn in summer (winter here) I don’t buy corn a lot. Love the look of these and the promise of delicious steamed goodies to come :). Cheers for the recipe guys.

  4. […] guest posting over at my friend Jody’s at The Vegan’s Husband today (he’s male, sometimes he has hair that looks like Scott Jurek’s and he’s […]

  5. My experience here int Texas with tamales always involved a pig’s head (ew!) and a whole afternoon with the ladies. And tons and tons of OIL.

    Such a healthy (and compassionate) alternative here. As a Christmas Eve tradition in our family — a hold over from Depression era days when many American and Mexican families in farming south Texas came together — we eat tamales, cornbread, and beans and rice. It’s just a must-have.

    Thank you for this vegan alternative. I will practice them on my immediate family first before bringing a batch to the group potluck in December.

    PS — love Shira’s no-cheese pepper sauce. We use it for everything else, why not tamales too?

    • Thank you so much for this. The idea of tamales as a Christmas dinner is pretty cool, and since my extended family does a pot luck too, mange you won’t be the only one bringing tamales to dinner.

  6. Found this via CarrieOnVegan… these look scrumptious! Can’t wait to try…

  7. Having these again for supper tonight (3rd time making them). Trying with fresh green chili instead of canned and have some fresh corn will try as well. Wondering what the mesquite does but just can’t get my ands on it. ❤

  8. Thx 😉 Already dug out the smoke pap…dig the smoke flav but not big on liquid smoke. Oh, we are a mixed house (I’m vegan/whole food plant based & hubby is omni, our two boys are mix) this is top of our list after trying countless recipes over past three years. ❤

  9. Aw yum, these sound amazing… love the sound of the smoky, spiced filling. I’ve actually never eaten a tamale. Does that mean I haven’t lived?! I think I’ll have to try this recipe… though I’ll have to to dry my own corn husks. I’ve never seen them for sale here 😦

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