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Tamales de Chocolate y Nuez

Author Vianney Rodriguez


  • 18 corn husks
  • 2 cups masa harina Maseca
  • 1/3 cup cocoa
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon ground chile ancho powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 ¾ cups warm milk
  • ½ cup unsalted butter softened
  • ¾ cup piloncillo grated
  • 3 tablespoons warm milk
  • Filling
  • 1 cup mini chocolate chips
  • ½ cup chopped pecans


  1. Prepare the corn husks: Place corn husks into a large heatproof bowl or stockpot. Cover the husk with enough boiling water to cover. Place a heatproof plate on the husks to keep them submerged. Soak for 1 hour.
  2. In a large mixing bowl stir together masa harina, cocoa, baking powder, cinnamon, chile powder, and salt. Slowly add warm milk and beat until all the liquid is absorbed and semi-firm dough forms; remove dough shape into a ball and cover with lightly damp paper towels, set aside. In the same mixing bowl cream the butter and piloncillo until light and fluffy, about 3-4 minutes, scraping the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula occasionally. Add masa harina dough to the mixer with creamed butter/piloncillo mixture. Continue to beat the dough, adding the warm milk one spoonful at a time to create soft creamy dough. If the dough is too wet beat in one tablespoon of masa harina at a time, you do not want your masa too crumbly. The chocolate masa will be the consistency of a brownie batter.
  3. Spread chocolate masa about 1/2 inches thick on corn husk with spoon, leaving about ½ inch border along the sides and 2 inch border along the top and bottom of husk. Sprinkle with pecans and mini chocolate chips and fold sides until they just overlap, fold narrow end under using the husk to press dough over filling. Place tamale folded side down and repeat.
  4. Place the tamales in a large steamer upright. Fill the pot of water with only enough water to touch the steamer, about 2 inches. The water should not touch the tamales. Lay a damp cloth over the tamales and cover with lid. Keep the water at a low boil, checking the pot occasionally to make sure the water doesn’t boil away. Add more water as needed. Steam the tamales for 45-55 minutes.

Recipe Notes

Tamales are done when the inside pull away from the husk. The tamale should be soft, firm and not mushy.
You can use thin strips of corn husks to tie the tamale together, although this is isn’t necessary.