Indulgence …

I’m sorry, but Blogger doesn’t seem to recognize returns or paragraph breaks today. I’ll check later and try to add them. Sigh.

Just for fun, here’s a quick, terribly fattening and delicious favorite from the Wren family, with irreverent comments. I originally typed it up and e-mailed it to Daughter Wren, who’s been craving it and plans to bring it along to put a twist into the traditional Thanksgiving feast (turkey, ham, dressing, mashed taters, green bean casserole, corn pudding, apple pie with ice cream and pumpkin pie with whipped cream) here at the Wren’s Nest.

Gramma Wren’s Tamale Pie

1 chili brick (available in grocery’s meat dept., in the frozen case);

1 can corn;

2 eggses, beaten;

2 cups milk;

1 can beef broth;

1 1/2 cups cornmeal;

1 lb. hamburger, sauteed and drained;

1-8 oz. can tomato sauce;

1 can whole, pitted olives, drained;

and 1 small can mushrooms, drained (you can leave these out, but Gramma Wren says “They’re so good in it! She can pick them out!” Heh. When I was a fledgling, she used to tell me, “You’re eating those mushrooms if you have to sit there all night!” Personally, I think canned mushrooms are slimy and horrible. If you’re gonna use ‘shrooms, buy them fresh, slice them up and add them raw. But the canned ones were used a LOT in White Male Patriarchal Society recipes in the 60s and 70s, which I think was when canned mushrooms were invented or something.)

But I digress. I’ll get serious now. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

Heat the chili brick in the beef broth, slowly, in a Dutch oven over low/medium heat on the stove. It will melt. The brick is made of concentrated, beanless, traditional Mexican chili con carne. It’s packed with yummy beef and authentic chili spices.

While the chili brick is melting, saute the hamburger (in a separate skillet, then drain off the grease) and put the hamburger and all the other ingredients into the Dutch oven with the melted chili brick. Mix everything up. Put the Dutch oven into the oven to cook. Check every fifteen minutes or so and stir. The mixture will thicken as the cornmeal bakes and the other ingredients heat through. You’ll know it’s done when the Tamale Pie is thick and moist, but not too wet and gooey or too dry. Gramma Wren thinks it takes about an hour to cook. Be patient — the end result is hella delicious.

Calories: Twenty-hundred-billion. But Tamale Pie is a rare and greatly anticipated treat which must be indulged in once in a while or life’s not worth living.

Note: The best and only chili brick still being made in California is Delores Chili Brick, made by Delores Canning Company in Los Angeles. The chili bricks are a bit rare at grocery stores anymore, but can still be found. Call around or visit to find it. Additionally, you could always add cooked pinto beans to this recipe, and finish it off with grated, melted cheddar cheese… with a dollop of sour cream on each portion … oh, my.

Have fun…


4 Responses to “Indulgence …”

  1. Now I’m hungry! Heading out to the grocery store tonight, I think … See you Thursday!

  2. Bill Stankus Says:

    “Delores Chili Brick” … a new quest!

  3. Max Rainey Says:

    I know I have a lot of nerve tagging you after not blogging for so long,but the fact is… I have a lot of nerve. So, TAG!
    yours in the struggle,

  4. MichaelBains Says:

    That would’ve went Great w/ my thanksgiving hot dogs!

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