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  • Writer's pictureThe Rough & Tumble

The Rumbly Tummy: Tamale Bread

Updated: Feb 1, 2021

Okay, okay. Tamale bread isn't a real thing, but this little folk band has been indulging in tamales since we hit Texas, and we aren't showing any signs of slowing.

We've been loving our time here in the Southwest, even outside of the tamales. But goodness gracious do we love these things. We've had sweet potato, tofu and sunflower seed, jalapeno and cheeze, tomato and pinto... we've splurged on every veggie/gf tamale from Austin to Santa Fe.

And last night, we hit the end of our supply in the back of our tiny freezer. We topped the batch with some Hatch Chili salsa from Albuquerque, and salted them with our tears as we realized we'd hit our last tamale.

So, in desperate times, there is Tamale Bread. Sure, it doesn't quite beat the magical moment when you unwrap the corn flour filled husk, but it's great with chili, and much easier to eat on that snowy drive from Santa Fe to Wray, Colorado.

Just like real tamales, you can fill it with anything. But in this case, we chose sweet potato (in honor of the first tamale we ate in Austin at Boulder Creek Cafe) and roasted jalapeno (roasted right on our gas burner and chopped into tiny pieces-- seeds and all!).

As a note, I did try to bake this recipe in a mashup Dutch oven, sort of steaming them on the stovetop (like real tamales), like I often do when we are without electricity and in need of a faux oven, but the texture of the steam didn't settle the bread right (and made it a bit gooey), so a real oven (or toaster oven in our case), is strongly recommended. I mean, like normal people have, I guess.

Tamale Bread


2 c cornmeal

3/4 c gluten free 1-to-1 flour blend

2 TBSP flaxmeal + 6 TBSP water, combined (or 2 eggs)

1/2 TBSP olive oil

1 tsp baking soda

1 1/2 tsp salt

2 tsp chili powder

1 tsp cumin

1/2 tsp smoked paprika

1/4 c maple syrup

1 c soy milk (or milk of choice) +

3/4 c mashed sweet potato

1 roasted jalapeno, chopped finely


1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

2. Combine cornmeal, flour, soda, salt & spices in a medium mixing bowl. Create a well in the center, add "eggs," syrup, oil, and half the milk. Mix together, slowly incorporating dry ingredients. Slowly add more milk as needed to have a thick but wet batter.

3. Fold in sweet potato & jalapeno. Add more milk, if needed so that batter is thick and pliable.

4. Pour in greased pie pan or 8x8 bread pan. Bake 30 - 40 minutes. Let sit at least 20 minutes before cutting and serving.


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