Recipe: Dessert Tamales, Texas-Style!

This image is no longer available

Who’s in the kitchen: A family operation, Hot Damn, Tamales! is run by Ione Stavron and her son, Constantine (he’s seen above, in the kitchen with one of his chefs). Descendants of Greek immigrants who arrived in Fort Worth more than a century ago, Ione and Constantine combine heritage and passion for quality, handmade food to produce tasty recipes for local customers and online patrons from across the nation. A beautifully preserved 1927 building on Fort Worth’s wildly popular West Magnolia Avenue serves as home to the tamale business and growing restaurant. The moment you walk in the door, you’re taken with the tempting aromas and friendly welcome.

Click through to the next page for Hot Damn! Tamale’s Cranberry, Jalapeno, Toasted Pecan Tamales

lunch at Hot Damn! Tamales, Fort Worth, Texas


Hot Damn! Tamale’s Cranberry, Jalapeno, Toasted Pecan Tamales


15 cups Maseca tamale corn flour

3 cups brown sugar

¼ cup dark red chile powder

kosher salt to taste

½ cup baking soda

½ cup powdered sugar

12 cups water

4 cups corn oil

2 pounds dried cranberries

8 jalapenos, seeded and roasted

2 pounds toasted pecans

50 corn husks

square sheets foil

In a very large mixing bowl, combine corn flour, brown sugar, chile powder, salt, baking soda and powdered sugar. Running a mixer at low speed, slow add water and the oil, mixing until a non-sticky dough forms. Add cranberries, jalapenos and pecans, gently mixing into the dough. Soak corn husks thoroughly in water for approximately 30 minutes, until they are pliable. To make a tamale, spoon approximately 1/3 to ½ cup of dough onto a damp, pliable corn husk, spreading it out with your fingers. Tuck and fold the tapered end of the corn husk up, leaving the other end of the tamale open.

When all tamales are prepared, place 6 uncooked tamales on a foil sheet and fold in the corners, fully wrapping the bundle. Place the bundle into a steamer, standing the bundle upright. Steam the tamales for approximately 1 hour. Pull out a bundle and try pulling the corn husk away from the dough. If the dough does not stick to the corn husk the tamales have cooked long enough.