The Art of the Tamale

Laurie Smith
  1. PRESSING: Oaxacan cook Zoyla Mendoza teaches protegee Lorena how to make tamales amarillos by first pressing a thin masa tortilla.

2. DRYING AND FILLING: In expert hands, the delicate tortilla is dried and filled with poached chicken and Yellow Mole Sauce.

3. FOLDING: The filled tamale is carefully folded and placed fold-side down on a softened cornstalk leaf. Corn leaves add a subtle flavor.

4. STEAMING: Zoyla wraps tamales into beautiful packages and steams for 5 minutes.