20-Minute Tamales

Serves 8. Recipe is from “The Southern Vegetarian: 100 Down-Home Recipes for the Modern Table” by Justin Fox Burks and Amy Lawrence, who say, “We love tamales, but they can be time-consuming to make. Even just steaming them takes at least an hour. So why not cook the masa the corn grits used to make tamales, on the stove top and then roll it in the corn husks with the filling? Using this method knocks a good hour off the time it takes to make this dish.”

4 cups vegetable broth

2 tbls. olive oil

Zest of 1 lime

1 tsp. ancho chili powder

1/2 tsp. baking powder

11/4 cups masa (for tamales)

18 corn husks (soaked in water for 1 hour until soft — or simply use parchment)

21/2 cups Tamale Filling (see recipe)

Hot sauce, to garnish

Simple Smoky Salsa, to garnish (see recipe)

1. Bring the broth to a boil and add the oil, lime zest, ancho and baking powder. Stir and then add the masa a little at a time so you don’t get any lumps. Cook for 20 minutes, stirring often to develop a creamy texture. While the masa is hot, spread about 1/4 cup in the center of a corn husk (or piece of parchment), place two spoonfuls of filling in the center of the masa and roll it up. You don’t need to fold the ends up because the thick masa stays in place. Allow them to cool.

2. To serve, simply heat the tamales in the microwave for 2 minutes and then top with hot sauce, salsa and anything else you’d like.

Note: This recipe freezes well.

Tamale Filling

Makes 21/2 cups.

21/2 cups Mushroom Meat (see recipe)

1 tsp. cumin

1/2 tsp. ancho chili powder

1/2 tsp. chipotle powder

Mix the Mushroom Meat, cumin, ancho and chipotle together in a small bowl and set aside until ready to use.