Sunday, January 8, 2012

Tamales in casserole form - 5 points per serving

I love tamales, but they take a lot of work and you have to have special equipment which, when you have a 5'x 3' kitchen, isn't really possible to store. This is my easy peesy alternative.

30 points total
5 points per serving.

1 cup Maseca    12 points
1 tbsp olive oil    4 points
1-2 cups Fat free, low sodium chicken broth 1-2 points
1 chicken breast (skin and fat removed) - 6 points
1/2 cup jack cheese (shredded) - 6 points
2 cans of green chiles - 0 points
Misc zero point vegis at your discretion - 0 points
Salsa verde - 0 points

Bring broth to boil in a narrow saucepan. Add chicken and boil for 20 minutes or so until chicken is white in color and breaks up with a fork.

While chicken is boiling, thaw any frozen vegis (I like Mexican mixes with zucchini, but you can choose your own) and coarse chop them then stick them in a bowl. Drain chiles and add chiles to vegis. Mix well.

When chicken is cooked, take it out of the broth and let the broth cool while you shred the chicken with two forks and add it to the vegi mix and stir thoroughly. Measure Maseca into glass casserole dish and mix in broth and olive oil until it makes a paste consistency. Spread it around the bottom of the dish so you have a thin (1/4 - 1/2 inch depending on the size of your dish) masa base. Pour enough salsa verde to cover the masa completely. It's important to keep the masa moist so you get a tamale texture. Top with vegi mix, then cheese.

Cover with foil to hold the moisture, and cook for 30-40 minutes until the masa takes on a spongy look.
Allow to cool for 10 minutes, then cut into 6 slices and serve. If you want a heartier meal with thicker masa, you can use a smaller dish and cut it into 4 pieces for a 7.5 point meal.

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