Yummy!These are the Puerto Rican version of “tamales”. Traditional pasteles are filled with pork or white fish. But my aunt made me some with only all “masa” dough which is in my opinion the most delicious part. Pasteles are labor intensive and are typically made for special occasions or holiday ( Christmas ).
Couldn’t get enough of these ! I got a shot of my beautiful cousin Celeste eating one outside.
- 1 1/3 lbs. yautía
- 3 lbs. guineos verdes
- 1 lbs. potatoes
- 1 green plantain
- 2 tbsp. milk
- ¼ cup achiote oil
Peel the rest of the vegetables, rinse them and grate in a food processor. Add milk, oil, and salt. Mix well, cover, and refrigerate for at least one hour.
It is best to do this the day before actually putting the pasteles together. It makes for easier handling masa.
The Wrapper (use either banana leaves or aluminum foil)
Banana leaves. Use 10 bundles of plaintain leaves. Remove the central ridge on each leaf. Divide leaves into pieces, about 10″ square. Wash and clean leaves with a damp cloth and blanch them (toast them slightly over gas stove flames).
If you have just a few plantain leaves cut them in small pieces and add a piece to each pastel for more flavor.
Aluminum foil.Use aluminum foil with butcher paper or plastic wrap on top to make a “wrapper.” You may add a piece of banana leaf (if available) right on top.
Assembling the pasteles
(Cover the kitchen counter with newspaper for easier cleanup time)
Turn on your Puerto Rican music. . . .
Grease center of the wrapper – using the back of a spoon dipped in achiote oil.
HINT – Use a ½ cup measuring cup to scoop dough (this helps keep the pasteles the same size). In the center of the wrapper place ½ cup of dough and thinly spread it not more than 5″ long and about 4″ wide. Keep a small ruler handy to determine size until you can “eye-ball it.”
Tie the pastel. (You may skip this part completely if you are using foil paper – simply make sure the folds are pressed securely.) Tie the pastel with string to hold it together. Make one run of string lengthwise and two runs the other way . This will hold the banana leaves secure.
Cook the pasteles for 1 hour turning them once half way through cooking. Freshly cooked pasteles taste much better. Freeze them raw.
¡Buen provecho! This is a common phase used before eating or serving a meal, a polite version of enjoy.