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Saving Corn husks->tamallies

Has anyone here ever saved corn husks for wrapping tamallies in? How?

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I've moved this thread from Seed Starting to Recipes since replies that follow are likely to head in that direction. :wink:

I'm looking forward to the replies. I've simply dried corn husks to make dolls with, but have not tried making tamales. 8)

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I don't think you could go wrong with just putting them on a big piece of something that you can move and putting them outside during the day and bringing them in at night to dry individually. (Bring them in so dew doesn't collect on them in the morning and ruin all the work from the day before.)

One of my best friends growing up was part of a 3-family community, she was 2nd generation Mexican-American. All three families lived on the same 20 acres and worked it together to support each other.

Her grandmother would just hang up a bunch of ears of corn with the husks pulled back, the silks removed and hung up on clothes pins by the husk in her garage. She did a bunch of stuff with the silks including weaving them together to make little baskets for us girls to "help" gathering fruits or to play kitchen with. After the corn dried out she would save the cobs for the dogs or teething babies to chew on and the husks went into several shoe boxes for Tamale Day (which was my faaaaavorite day to sleep over!).

She dried her corn out for months but I'm sure if you have a clothes line or something similar in your backyard... even a heavy string tied between two trees would work... you could put them out every morning and take them in at night, shouldn't take more than two weeks or so of this to dry them out I would think. Keep them in a cardboard box while they're inside for easy storage and then put the dried husks in Ziploc bags to store them. If you have a large deck or patio, they wouldn't hurt from just lining them up in an out-of-the-way spot that gets a lot of sunshine to dry them during the day, even.

Be careful, however, that your husks are -very- dry before you put them away because the humidity and moisture leftover could encourage mold found naturally on the corn to breed and your batch would be ruined.

Be prepared to spend a whole day making a big batch of tamales but they freeze soooooooo well and are so perfect for a quick lunch or dinner on a busy day covered in store-bought enchilada sauce (or you could make and can your own!).

Excellent enchilada recipe for canning [url=]here[/url]. And [url=]this[/url] is a great site to get you started on making tamales including detailed pictures (which I love because I always find myself wondering during new recipes... "is THIS what it is supposed to look like?!") and tips for cooking utensils and processes you may not be familiar with.

I hope this encourages more people to make these. Tamales are one of those dishes that can be intimidating because of the time invested but once you get the hang of it you'll kick yourself for ever spending $20 for a dozen of these on the side of the road (Guilty as charged... but still! I'm pregnant and I wanted Mexican food! Totally worth it, IMO).

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