Green Chile Tamales (for Steam Oven)

Cuisinart original

This recipe does require a few steps but the final results are well worth the effort. Depending on the size of the corn husks, you may be able to fill the tamales with more or less than recommended; it will become easier to gauge as you fill them.


Makes about 24 tamales


1½ pounds poblano peppers (about 8), stems trimmed
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 medium onion, peeled and finely chopped
1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and finely chopped
4 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon unbleached, all-purpose flour
2 cups water or low-sodium chicken broth
2 pounds whole chicken legs (about 4 legs), roasted, meat removed, shredded*
2 cans (4.5 ounces each) diced green chiles
½ teaspoon kosher salt
24 corn husks

Masa Dough:

5 cups masa harina
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon baking powder
2½ teaspoons kosher salt
3 ¾ cups water
1¼ cups vegetable oil

Nutritional information

Nutritional information per tamale:

Calories 259 (55% from fat) • carb. 22g • pro. 8g

• fat 16g • sat. fat 2g • chol. 17mg • sod. 423mg

• calc. 57mg • fiber 2g


1. Arrange the poblano peppers in a single layer on the baking pan  Put the pan in the oven with the rack in the middle rack position .  Set to Bake Steam at 425°F.  Cook for 30 minutes until charred, flipping the peppers halfway through cooking.  Remove peppers to a bowl and cover tightly with plastic wrap.

2. Once cool enough to handle, peel, seed, and roughly chop the peppers.  Set aside.

3. In a medium pot, heat the oil over medium-high heat.  Add the onion, jalapeño, and garlic and sauté until softened and lightly golden.  Whisk in the flour and cook for 1 to 2 minutes.  Whisk in the water or broth and bring to a boil .  Reduce heat to medium and add the chicken, poblano peppers and canned chiles.  Simmer for about 30 to 45 minutes until filling is thickened and still moist but not soupy.

4. While the filling is cooking, put husks in a large bowl and pour over enough boiling water to cover.  Use an inverted plate or heavy lid to keep the husks submerged for at least 1 hour.

5. Remove chile from heat and allow to cool slightly.  (It will thicken slightly as it sits.)

6. Prepare the masa dough.  In a large bowl, stir together the masa, baking powder, and salt.  Slowly add the water, using a wooden spoon or a clean hand to incorporate the liquid well.  Add the vegetable oil last and mix thoroughly until a dough is formed.  Refrigerate until ready to use.

7. Assemble the tamales.  Working with one husk at a time, remove from water and shake off any excess.    Lay the husk flat on a work surface with the larger end facing you.  Spread about ¼ cup of masa dough onto the husk, covering ⅔ of the husk toward the wider end.

8. Put about 2 to 4 tablespoons of filling on top of the masa, depending on the size of the husk.  Fold the sides of the husk in over the filling and the husk’s narrow end underneath the tamale to secure closed.  Repeat until all tamales have been filled.

9. Arrange the tamales on the baking pan, with the open ends upward, stacking against each other in a slightly slanted position.  Put in the oven with the rack in the lower rack position and set the oven to Steam at 210°F for 2 hours .  The masa should be set and the husk should peel easily away from it .

10. Serve immediately.

*To prepare the chicken in the oven, coat raw chicken legs with ½ teaspoon each salt and pepper and put in the baking pan with the rack in the middle rack position.  Set to Bake Steam at 325°F for 60 minutes.  Remove, cool, and shred the meat