Friday, June 9, 2023

Hallacas and Marrinitos

Bailey Woodean
Bailey Woodean
I have been a freelance writer for more than 4 years, a mom for more than 2 years, and a wife for just under a year. I am currently a student in a cooking and catering program with the intention of expanding my knowledge of the culinary business. I then plan to take this knowledge to properly write about and critique restaurants and food. Writing to you from Niagara Falls, NY, thanks for joining me on the ride!
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Looking for something from over the border tonight? Try these Venezuelan tamales: Hallacas! They are full of flavor and will satisfy that craving! Then, you can finish your meal off with these delicious Marrinitos or Mexican gingerbread pigs! There may be no better way to end an over the border themed night!

Traditional Hallacas
Traditional Hallacas


Original recipe sources from:

Ingredients for the tamales
  • 1 qt. beef consomme
  • 2 tbsp. paprika
  • 1/2 c. butter
  • 3 c. cornmeal
Instructions for the tamales
  1. Combine consomme and paprika and boil.
  2. Add butter and then stir in cornmeal.
  3. Cook, stirring until the mixture is smooth and thick, 10-15 minutes.
  4. Remove from heat and set aside.
Ingredients for the filling
  • 3 tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped fine
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 lb. ground round
  • 1 (3 lb.) chicken or 3 c. cooked
  • 6 scallions, sliced
  • 2 tbsp. capers
  • 2 tsp. sugar
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 chili pepper or 1/4 tsp. crushed dried pepper
  • 1/4 c. vinegar
  • 4 ripe tomatoes, peeled & chopped
  • 1/3 c. soft bread crumbs
  • 1/4 c. minced parsley
  • 1/2 c. Spanish sherry
Instructions for the filling
  1. Heat the oil in a large skillet. Add garlic, onion, and round steak, and brown.
  2. Add the chicken, which is cut up, the scallions, capers, sugar, salt, chili pepper, and vinegar.
  3. Simmer for 10 minutes, stir in the remaining ingredients and cook 5 minutes longer. Remove from heat.
Garnishes for the tamales
  • 2 hard-cooked eggs, sliced & slices cut in half
  • Pitted ripe olives, sliced
  • Stuffed green olives, sliced
  • Seedless raisins
Instructions for the garnishes
  1. Tear off a strip of aluminum foil 8 inches wide and place on a flat surface. Pinch off a small amount of Wallacea paste and flatten it down on the foil to make it 5 inches long and 2 inches wide. Top dough off with 2 tablespoons of filling, top with a little of each garnish.
  2. Pinch off enough of the paste to the top and flatten and seal edges.
  3. Seal foil around tamale and make a watertight seal.
  4. Drop-in boiling water to cover and cook for 1 hour. Unwrap and serve

Marranitos enfiestados

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened (about 1 stick)
  • 1 cup dark brown sugar, packed
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup unsulfured molasses
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 5 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper and set them aside.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream butter until smooth. Add the dark brown sugar and mix until well combined. Add in one egg, molasses, milk, and vanilla extract. Mix until smooth.
  3. In a separate large bowl, add the flour, ground ginger, baking soda, and cinnamon. Mix together to combine.
  4. Add the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients 1 cup at a time and mix until well combined. The dough should cleanly pull away from the mixing bowl.
  5. Transfer the dough onto a lightly floured surface and roll out to 3/8 inch thickness (or a little less than 1/2 inch). Use a pig-shaped cookie cutter like this one to cut into pigs. Place pigs 1 1/2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheets. Brush the remaining beaten egg over the tops of the cookies.
  6. In a small bowl, crack open the remaining egg and whisk. Brush the beaten egg over the tops of the pigs using a pastry brush.
  7. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes, until the edges are lightly browned.

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