What to Eat With Tamales for Dinner
Tamales are a traditional Mexican dish that has gained popularity around the world. These delicious bundles of masa dough filled with various ingredients, such as meats, cheese, or vegetables, are often served during special occasions or festivals. While tamales can be a satisfying meal on their own, pairing them with complementary side dishes can elevate your dining experience. In this article, we will explore some delectable options for what to eat with tamales for dinner.
Pairing Tamales with Salsa and Guacamole
One classic combination that perfectly complements tamales is salsa and guacamole. Salsa, made from tomatoes, onions, peppers, and spices, adds a tangy and spicy kick to the tamales. You can choose from a variety of salsas, ranging from mild to fiery, depending on your preference. Guacamole, made from mashed avocados, onions, tomatoes, lime juice, and cilantro, provides a creamy and refreshing contrast to the tamale’s texture. The combination of the two condiments adds a burst of flavors that balances the richness of the tamale.
Beans and Rice with Tamales
Another popular choice to accompany tamales is beans and rice. The combination of these two staples adds a heartiness to the meal. Beans, whether black, pinto, or refried, provide a protein-rich element that complements the tamale’s filling. The rice, often cooked with onions, garlic, and spices, adds a fluffy and aromatic component. Together, beans and rice create a perfect balance of textures and flavors that enhance the enjoyment of tamales.
Fresh Salad to Refresh the Palate
If you’re looking for something lighter to accompany your tamales, a fresh salad can be an excellent choice. The crispness and vibrant colors of lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, and other vegetables can provide a refreshing contrast to the tamale’s richness. You can dress the salad with a simple vinaigrette or opt for a creamier dressing, such as ranch or avocado lime, to add more depth of flavor. The salad not only complements the tamales but also adds a healthy and nutritious element to the meal.
Mexican Street Corn as a Flavorful Side
Mexican street corn, or elote, is a popular street food in Mexico and is a delicious side dish to serve with tamales. Grilled corn on the cob is slathered with a mixture of mayonnaise, Mexican crema or sour cream, crumbled cheese, chili powder, and lime juice. The combination of flavors, ranging from creamy to tangy and spicy, creates a delightful explosion in your mouth. The smoky and charred corn pairs exceptionally well with the tamale, adding a complexity of flavors to your dining experience.
Q: Can I freeze leftover tamales?
A: Yes, tamales can be frozen for later consumption. Wrap them tightly in plastic wrap or aluminum foil before placing them in a freezer bag. When ready to eat, thaw them in the refrigerator overnight and reheat in a steamer or microwave.
Q: Can I eat tamales for breakfast?
A: While tamales are commonly enjoyed for lunch or dinner, they can certainly be a delicious breakfast option. Pair them with eggs, salsa, and beans for a hearty morning meal.
Q: Are there any vegetarian options to eat with tamales?
A: Absolutely! Vegetarian options such as grilled vegetables, Mexican-style corn salad, or a variety of fresh salsas can be great choices to accompany vegetarian tamales.
Q: Can I serve tamales as an appetizer?
A: Yes, tamales can be served as appetizers, especially during gatherings or parties. Cut them into smaller portions and provide a variety of dipping sauces or salsas for guests to enjoy.
In conclusion, tamales are a versatile dish that can be enjoyed on their own or paired with various side dishes. Whether you prefer the spiciness of salsa and guacamole, the heartiness of beans and rice, the freshness of a salad, or the flavors of Mexican street corn, there are numerous options to enhance your tamale dinner experience. Experiment with different combinations and find your favorite accompaniments to create a memorable and satisfying meal.