Okay, measuring is not my strong point in this recipe with the exception of the dry ingredients, fats and can of corn so you are going to have to adjust a little. The good thing is if you add too much water you can just cook it longer
If you have more or different veggies, you can adjust the liquid at the end...So it's pretty foolproof... This makes a 9 x 13 casserole
3.5 c Masa flour (Maseca .. none of that quaker crap)
1 can creamed corn
1/4 cup butter (or just add more of whatever fat you like, it's best if it's a solid fat)
1/4 cup earth balance (or just add more of whatever fat you like, it's best if it's a solid fat)
2 Tbsp of cumin if your kids can handle spices
1 Tbsp granulated garlic
1 tsp salt
3 medium carrots
1 large onion (think the mayan sweet onions, like 4 inch diameter - or equivalent)
2 green peppers (seeded and stemmed and quartered)
2 red peppers (seeded and stemmed and quartered)
1 - 2 cup zucchini (or broccoli, or greens (greens will give it a green tint) - smaller diced)
Vegetable or chicken stock
2 cups cheese (optional)
Preheat the oven to 425
1. In a food processor or blender (you can also dice everything whatever size your family would most like), add the carrots and pulse until minced/still fibrous but not liquid. Scrape out to bowl. Add onions, green peppers, red peppers and zucchini and pulse till it is chunky salsa textured or smaller (we make it like a smooth salsa to hide the veggies from dd). It will be a little watery and dont worry if you do it too much, you cant really screw this up. Mix it with the carrots and set aside.
2. In a large bowl whip the fats (butter, earth balance, shortening) until fluffy. Add half the masa and mix until combined. Add can of cream corn and mix till combined. Add rest of the masa flour, salt, garlic, cumin and the vegetables from step 1. Start with 1 cup of stock, mixing well. I usually seem to use about 2- 2.5 cups. You want the consistency of uncooked cornbread. It should be thick and very most, stick together very easily, not be liquidy, but you dont want it dry either. If it feels grainy it is probably too dry. If you want you can mix rinsed black or pinto beans in at this point. If your kids dont like whole beans, you can mix refried beans in before you add the stock and then adjust the amount of stock you use.
3. Butter a 9 x 13 casserole dish. You have some additional options.. you can layer some tamale mixture and then put ground beef or shredded or diced chicken in the center.. you can add more cheese to the center, a thin layer of refried beans (refried beans will increase your cook time).. pork, chorizo, jalepeno chicken sausage, veggie crumbles, etc. Top with second layer of tamale mixture and bake covered loosely with foil (just lay a piece of foil on the top) for 35 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for 20- 40 more minutes (If you make it wet or with refried beans it takes longer) until a knife comes out clean of the masa mix.
4. Remove from oven to rack. Cover with shredded cheese and let it melt with the existing heat. Let cool and firm up.
It is so much better if you can let it cool and set up a bit before eating. So if you try this recipe and you dont dig it the first night, try it again the next day.
Serve with Cholula, your favorite salsa, enchilada sauce, or like my friend who has 4 boys with bottomless pits of stomachs and works a full time job - microwave some chili, a can of rotel and a block of velveeta and pour on each serving
I hope you try it. It freezes wonderfully and is so much easier then tamales with a very similar taste. I love tamale pie.