Last weekend I decided try my hand at making tamales all by myself. If you've never made them before let me tell ya - it's an all day affair. There's a lot of work involved with creating those little packets of heaven and it's usually better when you have a lot of worker bees available to help. It was just little ol' me so I was constantly scurrying between spreading the masa, spooning out the filling, rolling the husks and tying them closed.
I was ginning right along and eventually assembled about 10 dozen tamales. The only thing left to do was place them in a large pan and let them steam for about an hour. Sounds easy, right? It was. Except for the fact that I had to keep checking the pan to make sure there was enough water inside to produce steam. My giant pot had about one inch of water in the bottom and when you have a huge pot and one little inch of water, the chances of it boiling dry are constant so you've got to be vigilant.
My steaming pan only has about 4" clearance between the lid of the pan and my vent-a-hood, and 10 dozen tamales are fairly heavy, so moving the pan over to the counter to raise the lid is not an option when you're having to do it every 10 minutes.
This means that each time I wanted to check my water levels, I had to carefully raise the lid, let the steam escape then peer into the bottom. After doing that about a hundred million times I was starting to get a little tired and my brain wasn't as sharp as it usually is(not).
One particular water check turned out to be my last for the day - I did not allow time for the steam to clear. I lifted the lid and placed the top half of my face right over the opening. Can you guess what happened?
That's right, I got the facial of a lifetime. I probably screamed loud enough for people to hear 2 counties away! My eyes felt like the corneas had been melted away. My eyelashes probably fell out in clumps. My skin had 3 layers removed without the aid of retinol or whatever that stuff is that dermatologists use to remove layers of skin. Cool water didn't do much to ease the sting - neither did ice packs. I was just going to have to wait it out.
I eventually calmed down and had the sense to apply a 1/4" thick layer of slimy salve to the burns. The following day I kept having trouble seeing and felt like I had bubbles or bumps on the edges of my eyelids and upon closer inspection, that's exactly what I saw. Tiny little blisters had formed. UGH GROSS!!!
The day after that I went to work like normal, with the hopes that people wouldn't think I was stoned since my eyes were red and barely opened. I applied makeup to cover some of the redness but I think the blisters might have given away the fact that I scalded the wrinkles right off of my face. On a side note, I am looking particularly youthful since everything was burned off.
I was pus-a-tively beautiful!!!
Since I've flashed my boobies (accidentally) at a co-worker, strolled through the whole office with my ass hanging out of my skirt, walked countless times at work with my fly open and done a myriad of other stupid things, I don't think people really even realized that I was a hot red, pus faced tamale making queen. I was just my normal goofy self.
If any of the three of my readers happen to have gotten tamales as a gift from me, don't worry...I prepared everything before I turned into the blister babe so your tamales are not tainted.