Tamale Pie with Cacao Sprinkles and Pina Colada Sorbet

Pineapples are making their presence known around here, so we'll be making jam and sorbet and upside down cake, salsa, but best of all is just fresh, sweet and juicy.  If it gets to be overwhelming, I make wine.  These are Hawaii's select White Pineapples - on top of the pineapple charts, ambrosia really.  I have quite a few planted, in borders, around trees and in their own patch.  Every time I pull off a top, it gets planted somewhere, so over the years the numbers keep increasing.

I thought a Pina Colada Sorbet would be just the perfect dessert Sunday after my Tamale Pie.  Coconut cream, pineapple juice, some agave nectar and a bit of rum.  Outstanding really, it was light, refreshing, and tasted just like a Pina Colada.

Pina Colada Sorbet

3 1/2 cups fresh pineapple juice
1/2 cup coconut milk
1/4 to 1/3 cup agave nectar (depending upon how sweet you like it and how sweet your pineapples are)
2 - 4 tablespoons white rum

Pour into your ice cream maker and run til thick.  Freeze until it gets as firm as you like and enjoy!

The Tamale Pie was very yummy and satisfying, with zucchini, green chili, refried black beans, hamburger, etc.  I'll just give the recipe.  As casseroles go it's a real family pleaser and easy to put together.

Spicy Tamale Pie

Serves 4-5
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 small onion, chopped
1 zucchini, chopped or 1/2 medium bell pepper
1 small green chili pepper, minced
1 lb. lean ground beef
2 tablespoons chili powder
1 teaspoon cumin powder
1 tablespoon fresh oregano (I used Mexican perennial)
1 14 1/2  oz. can tomatoes, cut up in small pieces
1 can black or pinto beans, whole or refried
1 cup corn, cut from the cob (canned or frozen is okay)
1 teaspoon salt, plus more to taste
3/4 cup yellow cornmeal
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon ground cacao

Heat the oil over medium heat in a large skillet.  Fry the vegetables (except corn), stirring until the onion is beginning to brown, 3-5 minutes.  Crumble the ground beef into pan and cook, stirring to break up lumps, until the meat is no longer pink.  Add the chili powder, oregano, tomatoes, beans, corn and salt, stirring frequently until thickened, 8 to 10 minutes.  You can sprinkle the cacao powder now, and stir it in, or on top, as I did.  Transfer to a greased 2 quart ovenproof casserole. 

Preheat oven to 350 F.  In a medium saucepan, combine cornmeal, the 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1 1/4 cups cold water.  Whisk until blended, then bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring.  Continue to cook, stirring until thickened, about 5 minutes.

Spread the cornmeal batter evenly over casserole ingredients.  Sprinkle cheese evenly over the cornmeal topping, and the cacao at the end, unless you added it to the tamale mixture, which I would have done if I had remembered in time.  I would also add a bit more of it (reflected in the recipe).  Bake in preheated oven a30 to 35 minutes, or until casserole is hot, bubbling and the top golden brown.

A nice fresh green salad is all I'd add.  We went through it lickedy split and enjoyed every bite.  I'm going to share this with Hearth and Soul Blog Hop, and invite you to take a look at lots of great recipes over there.


Kirsten Lindquist said...

Yowza! Claudia, those both look amazing. That tamale pie is happening really soon at my house! And once again, I am overwhelmed with envy at what you grow in your yard! Amazing! So cool! thanks for sharing!

a moderate life said...

Hi Claudia! You have just given me an inspiration! Seriously, my kids and husband adore tamales and I have just been so chicken to try making them because my friend says they are difficult, so we get them from a great authentic mexican take out restaurant! the idea of making them into a casserole never occurred to me and so now, I will simply have to try this recipe! Thank you so much for sharing this light bulb recipe with us on the hearth and soul hop! Aloha! Alex

Rachel said...

Beautiful picture of those pineapples growing.

And what a menu. Sounds very tasty.