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Cumin Pork Potato Filled Tamales

  • Yield: 16 tamales


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 pound pork butt, cut into small dice (1/2 to 3/4-inch)
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup chopped tomatoes
  • 1 1/2 cups potato, peeled and diced (1-inch)
  • 2 cups stock or broth
  • 16 dried husks, soaking in water
  • Basic Tamale Dough


  • In a medium sauce pan, heat the oil until it ripples, add the pork and brown on all sides, about 5 minutes. Add the onions, garlic, pepper, cumin and salt. Cook for 3 minutes. Add the tomatoes, potatoes, and the stock, bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer for 1 hour, or until the meat is very tender. The liquid will absorb and the mixture will become slightly "stewed". The pork should be tender and moist. If more liquid is needed, add a little at a time. Remove from the heat and cool. Remove the husk from the water and dry with a clean towel. Place 2 tablespoons of tamale dough in center. Spread within 1/2-inch of the wide end and halfway toward the pointed end. Put 1 heaping tablespoon meat filling in center of tamale. Fold sides of husk towards center to overlap. Fold pointed end toward the filling. Repeat with the remaining husk. Put 2 cups of water into a large pan with a rack. Arrange the tamales, seam side down on the rack. Cover with foil and top the foil with a clean towel to catch to excess moisture. Put a lid on the pan, bring the water to a boil, reduce the heat to a simmer, and steam for 45 minutes. Serve with a green salsa. To serve, peel back the husk and dip in.