A variation of tamales, in tamal en cazuela, a traditional Cuban dish, the pork and corn are simmered together until thickened.
- 2 lbs pork shoulder (or pork loin), diced into bite-size pieces
- 2 lbs baby corn , or tender corn kernels
- 5 cups boiling water
- 6 cloves garlic , crushed
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- ½ teaspoon ground cumin
- ⅓ cup fresh bitter orange juice (or 4 tablespoons fresh orange juice mixed with 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice)
- ½ cup extra virgin olive oil , or corn oil
- 1 onion , chopped
- 1 green pepper , chopped
- 4 ajis cachuchas (sweet Cuban peppers), seeded and thinly sliced
- ½ cup tomato sauce (passata)
- ⅓ cup vino seco (Cuban dry cooking wine)
- 3 tablespoons harina fina (finely ground yellow cornmeal)
- 1 tablespoon flat leaf parsley , finely chopped
- 3 tablespoons cilantro , finely chopped
- Dutch oven
- Place the pork into a large bowl.
- In another bowl, mix together the garlic, salt, oregano and cumin to make a paste, then add the bitter orange (or orange or lime) juice. Pour the entire contents of the bowl over the pork.
- Cover with cling film and marinate in the refrigerator for 4 hours.
- In the bowl of a blender, mix together 3 cups (750 ml) of water and the corn to make a smooth purée, adding a little more water if necessary.
- Remove the pork from the marinade, and dry on paper towels. Reserve the marinade.
- In a large skillet over medium-high heat, heat the oil then add the pieces of pork in a single layer, spacing them out a bit.
- Reduce the heat to medium, and brown the pork on all sides for 8 to 10 minutes.
- When it is golden, remove the pork and set aside.
- In a Dutch oven, pour the remaining water and add the onion, bell pepper and Cuban peppers. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring frequently, for 15 minutes, until the onion and peppers are softened.
- Add the meat, tomato sauce, wine, reserved marinade, and the corn purée.
- Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring constantly.
- Add the cornmeal, mix well, then reduce the heat to low.
- Cover the pot and simmer gently, stirring frequently, for about 1 hour, until the corn thickens to a mushy consistency.
- Taste and adjust the seasoning.
- To serve, pour the tamal into a shallow dish or large soup bowl.
- Sprinkle with parsley and cilantro, and enjoy immediately.