Panamanian Tamales (Emeril Lagasse) Recipe

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Panamanian Tamales (Emeril Lagasse)
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  1. In a large saucepan, heat the olive oil and brown the chicken pieces. Add the onions, pepper and celery, and cook, stirring, until tender, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the tomatoes, chicken stock, 1 teaspoon of the salt, oregano, coriander, pepper, raisins, capers, green olives and pine nuts. Simmer until the chicken is very tender and the sauce is reduced by half, about 2 1/2 hours. Remove the chicken from the bones; return the chicken to the saucepan and cook until sauce is almost completely reduced; let cool.
  2. In a food processor, combine the masa harina with the lard and salt and mix well. While the machine is running, slowly add the broth until it is fully incorporated. The mixture should resemble a thick cake batter. Cut the banana leaves into pieces about 10 or 12-inches square. Spread 6 tablespoons of the masa along the center of each piece of banana leaf until all of the masa has been used. Add 3 tablespoons of the filling in a line down the center of each portion of the corn masa. Fold the banana leaf up, 1 side at a time, so that the masa edges meet to enclose the chicken filling, and fold the banana leaf into a neat rectangular packet and secure with butcher's twine. Continue this process until all the tamales are wrapped and tied.
  3. Position a steamer basket inside a large pot (such as a stockpot or pasta pot) and line the steamer basket on the bottom with some of the extra banana leaves. Add as much water as possible to the steamer bottom (water should not touch the bottom of the steamer basket). Add the tamales to the steamer basket, cover the steamer, and bring to a boil. Steam the tamales until masa is completely cooked through and tender and tamales are set, about 1 hour. Remove tamales from the steamer and allow to cool briefly before serving with fried plantain strips, if desired.
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Nutrition Facts

Per ServingPer 100 g
Amount Per 1 Serving
Calories 587.76 Kcal (2461 kJ)
Calories from fat 390.5 Kcal
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 43.39g 67%
Cholesterol 34.86mg 12%
Sodium 1417.02mg 59%
Potassium 568.54mg 12%
Total Carbs 44.46g 15%
Sugars 15.66g 63%
Dietary Fiber 5.47g 22%
Protein 7.76g 16%
Vitamin C 17.8mg 30%
Iron 0.4mg 2%
Calcium 84.4mg 8%
Amount Per 100 g
Calories 106.85 Kcal (447 kJ)
Calories from fat 70.99 Kcal
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 7.89g 67%
Cholesterol 6.34mg 12%
Sodium 257.6mg 59%
Potassium 103.36mg 12%
Total Carbs 8.08g 15%
Sugars 2.85g 63%
Dietary Fiber 0.99g 22%
Protein 1.41g 16%
Vitamin C 3.2mg 30%
Iron 0.1mg 2%
Calcium 15.3mg 8%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Find out how many calories should you eat.


  • salty
  • savory
  • bitter
  • sweet
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Recipe Tags

Weightwatchers Points

  • 14.6
  • 16

Good Points

  • saturated fat free,
  • low cholesterol

Bad Points

  • High in Sodium

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