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Papa's Old Mexican Tamale Recipe

Learn to Make Kathy's Dad's Famous Tamale Recipe from Scratch!

By: Kathy Cano Murillo from
Papas Old Mexican Tamale Recipe
Papas Old Mexican Tamale Recipe
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Papa's Old Mexican Tamale Recipe is an easy Mexican-style recipe that has been passed down from father to daughter. Watch Kathy Cano Murillo as she shows us how her dad used to make tamales from scratch in our test kitchen. Making tamales may seem complicated at first, but this video breaks it down step by step and makes the process seem a lot less intimidating. These tamales are great for serving at a party or potluck, and traditionally, a lot of Mexican households will make and enjoy tamales around the holidays -- especially Christmas. Bring a new tradition into your home or just learn to make something you never thought to before with this easy and delicious recipe for homemade tamales, just like Papa used to make! 

Yields12 tamales

Cooking Time1 hr


  • For the Masa:
  • 1/2 cup shortening
  • 1/4 cup lard
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups masa harina (corn tortilla flour; can be found in the Mexican food isle at your local grocer)
  • 1 cup beef broth
  • 18 dried corn husks (about 8 inches long and 6 inches wide at the top)
  • 18 medium pitted green or ripe olives, halved (optional)
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The lady in this video looks like she's having so much fun while she's cooking it makes you wanna try anything she makes. It's really interesting having come from a family who made the traditional tamales growing up, to see how different people make their own versions. I've heard of the one olive method but never understood why it was only one or why it wasn't evenly distributed...but it looks good either way.

I've been wondering how to make tamales! She makes it look so easy - I might have to give it a try


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