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Jul 12, 2008 04:25 PM

Sweet corn tamales?

We just got back from a trip through Arizona and Colorado and had fabulous sweet corn tamales with green chile. Does anyone know of a place in Austin (or surround areas) that serves these? The kicker, too, is that we want no lard in the tamales--we're vegetarian. Thanks, chowhounds!

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  1. Sad to say they moved out of Austin, but you can get them at farmers markets I believe, I heard through word of mouth and they probably don't have sweet corn, 'BUT' they don't use lard and they are incredible, different but so good, they are wrapped in bannna leaves, OK now I am craving those and her green salsa, I need to go......

    Can't wait to hear about tamales around Austin, love them!!!!

    7 Replies
    1. re: familyof3

      While the lack of lard generally denotes bad tamales, Leonor's are delicious. I believe that you can still get them at the sunset valley farmers market. Also, the ride out of town is not too far for a Saturday or Sunday lunch excursion. If you go, then be sure and pick up some of their pozole also.

      A good chow trip could include hitting up Little Thailand on the way back.

      1. re: El General

        I haven't been to the downtown farmer's market in a while, but their website claims that Oaxacan Tamaleo shows up on Saturdays:

        1. re: thrackle

          My bad, I thought it was sunset valley. I have never bought them from the farmer's market.

          1. re: El General

            Whoops - didn't mean to imply that they're not at the Sunset Valley farmer's market. I think they go to both.

            1. re: thrackle

              Oaxacan Tamaleo does go to both the downtown and the Sunset Valley Farmer's markets every Saturday. Usually, the owner is running the stand downtown, while her stepson runs the stand at Sunset Valley.

        2. re: El General

          "While the lack of lard generally denotes bad tamales"

          Maybe generally but in some regions of Mexico tamales are made with Palm Fruit Oil, Cacao Butter, Ground Peanuts (all three of these much more authentic/traditional/ancient than Lard) or Olive Oil. As long as its intentional.. and the person knows what they are doing... then the idea that a tamal HAS to be made with lard is absolutely false.

          1. re: Eat_Nopal

            I know little of the pedigree of tamales of the world. I know only of the relative deliciousness of Tex Mex tamales around the state, and here in Austin as it relates to this board.

            Generally speaking, tamales that I have had that use vegetable oil instead of lard as shortening are not as delicious as those that do use lard. Also, a Tex Mex tamale (the vast majority of those in Austin) is much more 'authentic' if it has lard than if it uses vegetable oil.

            The tamale's made by Leonor at Oaxacan Tamaleo do not use lard, and are quite delicious.

      2. El Zunzal on East 7th has a sweet corn tamale, but I'm not sure whether they're made with lard.

        1. Hyde Park Bar & Grill serves a sweet corn (& cheese) tamale appetizer that is pretty tasty.

          1. I would *definitely* recommend trying a tamal de elote (sweet corn tamal, no filling and bigger and sweeter than most Mexican tamales you see in Austin) from El Zunzal or another Salvadorian restaurant (although I don't know of any others in Austin), they are delicious!! I am not sure that they will be the same thing you ate in Arizona or Colorado, and they come with crema mexicana not green chile, but they are very good. While you're there get a pupusa.

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