I’ve come to tamales slowly. I used to prefer the more crunchy offerings of Mexican cuisine. In other words, tacos and taquitos. Then chimichangas. And burritos and soft tacos. Finally moving away from fast food mexican food to real Mexican food. And I can never go back again. Oaxacan cuisine, the food from Mary Sue Milliken and Susan Fenniger at Border Grille, oh how I miss Tia Juana here on the Westside. They’d make the tortillas right in front of you. I wish them luck to wherever they moved to. I hold out hope that one day, they’ll reappear magically again on the Westside. Great margaritas too.
But tamales... They were something I usually didn’t order. And when I did from various street vendors, they seemed either dry or slimy, with some mystery meat inside. Now don’t get me wrong. I love mystery meat as much as the next guy. And the sort of wet slimy tamales I’ve had are actually pretty good. And cheap.
Which brings us to La Guera Tamalera.
La Guera Tamalera is the brainchild of Deborah Stern who bills herself as the White-Girl Tamale Maker here in Los Angeles.http://www.gttamales.com/
The tamales are organic, non-GMO as much as it is possible to be There are vegetarian and vegan options as well as pork and chicken. And dessert ones which I’ve not tried yet. But will. Now here’s the thing. Deborah delivers them to your home or work. She has no food truck, or brick and mortar store, and although appears to have them in some retail locations, you can only get them by ordering directly from her. She has a delivery area on different days. If you’re in that area, then you can get them. Follow her on Twitter and/or FaceBook. She has links there.
When I finally noticed she was out on the Westside, I was out of the delivery area. By e-mail, I asked if she could deliver slightly out of that area. Very kindly, she said yes. You can order as little as two I believe for free delivery. I decided I’d go whole hog and order a selection. Two chicken, two pork, a jalapeno/cheese, a sesame/kale, and a spinach/shiitake mushroom. Which brings us to price. These are not cheap. Five bucks a shot. Less if you order six or more. They come with home made salsa. A mild red and a spicy green. And a strange sour cream which my wife didn’t particularly like. Since I don’t see a need to put sour cream on anything, I declined as well. I mean, come on, it’s sour! What’re you doing with it?
The masa is thick, the filling generous. They are expertly tied into tubes of wonderfully smelling packages.
But do they taste good?
Best tamales I’ve ever tasted and I will be ordering again. I want to try the dessert ones. Are they worth five bucks a shot? Heck! Tamales! Great tasting Tamales delivered right to your door. HOT! Right to your door! She brings them right in and you eat them right there. I actually ate just one then waited until the rest cooled a little and stuck them in the refrigerator. I then used apressure cooker steamer to warm them up for dinner. Follow the directions on reheating and you’ll be good. My favorites were the pork and the jalapeno/cheese guys. They were all great. The chicken ones didn’t have a lot of chicken in it. Still thought it tasted great. Plus, none of that picking bits of “what the heck is that” out of your mouth.
Eat up! You’ll be happy!