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Spicy Tamale Pie

No recipe image available.Don't be put off by the long list of ingredients and the plethora of spices and seasonings that go into the meat filling and cornmeal crust of this tamale pie—because it all pays off in the end.

Recipe Ingredients:

1 1/3 cups cold water
1/2 cup yellow cornmeal
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 teaspoons butter or margarine

1 pound lean ground beef
1 cup chopped onion
1 medium green bell pepper, chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely minced
1 (15-ounce) can tomato sauce
1 cup loose-pack frozen whole kernel corn, thawed
1 tablespoon yellow cornmeal
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
2 teaspoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 to 1 teaspoon hot pepper sauce
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 cup cheddar cheese

Cooking Directions:

  1. For Crust: In a small saucepan combine water, 1/2 cup cornmeal, 1 teaspoon cumin, paprika, salt, and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper. Bring just to boiling; reduce heat. Stir in the butter. Cook, uncovered,over low heat for 10 minutes, stirring often. Remove from heat. Spread mixture on waxed paper into an 8-inch round. Chill while preparing meat mixture.
  2. For Filling: In a large skillet cook ground beef, onion, bell pepper, and garlic until meat is brown and onion is tender. Drain fat. Stir in the tomato sauce, corn, 1 tablespoon cornmeal, chili powder, 1 teaspoon cumin, cocoa powder, allspice, hot pepper sauce, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer, uncovered, for 5 minutes.
  3. Spoon meat mixture into a 2-quart round baking dish. Cut cornmeal mixture into 6 wedges and carefully place atop the meat mixture.
  4. Bake, uncovered, in a 375°F (190°C) oven about 30 minutes or until bubbly and cornmeal topping is light brown. Remove from oven and immediately sprinkle with cheese. Let stand for 2 to 3 minutes or until cheese is melted.

Makes 4 to 6 servings.