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La Cocina Goya

If you haven't tried Hallacas, you don't know what you're missing. This tamale has the Venezuelan touch with its delicious flavor and soft texture. Don't miss out on making them with our convenient GOYA® Masarepa - Pre-Cooked Yellow Corn Meal. Use it to easily make the dough that wraps the delicious mix of beef, pork, and chicken. They also have olives, capers, and other tasty ingredients that give life to this traditional dish that is synonymous with celebration. They're just perfect!

  • Ingredients
  • Directions

For the filling

4 lbs.

boneless beef

4 lbs.

boneless pork

4 lbs.

boneless chicken

2 lbs.



medium yellow onions, diced


sweet peppers, diced


medium red peppers, diced

1 cup

green onions, chopped

2 tbsp.

GOYA® Salt


(25.4 oz.) GOYA® Red Cooking Wine

1 bag (16 oz.)

GOYA® Plantain Leaves, smoked

For the dough

1 cup

GOYA® Manteca - Lard

15 cups



butter, soften

GOYA® Salt, to taste

For the assembly


medium onions, sliced


red peppers, cut into strips

4 cups

parsley, sprigs



2 lbs.

bacon, chopped


roll of cotton cooking twine


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Step 1

To make the filling, cut the beef, pork, chicken, and bacon in small pieces. Next in a food processor, combine the onion, scallions, peppers, and garlic. Pulse until pureed. In a large pot over medium heat, cook the bacon, add the puree vegetables. Stir and combine and cook for 1-2 minutes, until softened slightly. Add the pork, beef, chicken and stir. Add the spices, piloncillo, wine and bring it to a quick boil and then simmer for about 4 hours stirring frequently until the meat is completely cooked and shreds easily. Remove the pot from the heat, allow to cool and refrigerate the stew overnight.

Step 2

Preparation and cleaning the leaves: Wash the leaves with water; clean them well with a damp cloth and dry them with a dry one. Divide the leaves in two types: one that's the main one (the biggest one) which is where you have to place the dough and hallaca filling and the second leaf (smaller one) that covers, the tamal while is cooking. You should remove the center stem from the leaves, since this prevents them from bending easily.

Step 3

To make the dough, in a hot pot with add the water and heat to a boil then dissolve the bouillon, mix and remove from the stove. In a hot pan add the pork fat and annatto seeds. Let the pork fat dissolve and the annatto to render its color. Remove from the stove and let cool. In a large container, add the corn flour and incorporate little by little with the chicken broth, and the softened butter. Knead vigorously and add the pork fat with annatto and salt to taste. The dough has to be soft and with a yellow color. Divide the dough in 50 equal balls.

Step 4

To assemble the hallacas, Dampen a large leaf with a bit of vegetable oil. Place one ball of dough in the middle of a leaf. Extend the dough in a circular motion with your hands until it is of a 1/4 of an inch thick. Add one tablespoon and a half of the filling with its juice in the center of the dough. On top of the filling, place 2 onion rings, 1 pepper strip, one parsley sprig, 3 raisins, 2 chickpeas, 2 capers, 2 olives and a small piece of bacon.

Step 5

Continue folding the leaf. Take the wider edges and attach them upward. Create a fold until it is completely sealed. Fold the other two ends towards the inside and wrap it with the smaller leaf. Tie the hallacas with the previously cut yarn (of approximately 1 meter and a half lengh). Cross them three times in each direction (horizontal and vertical) and close with a knot or bow.

Step 6

In a large pot, boil 8 gallons of water at high heat. Place the hallacas, cover and cook them to low heat for an hour and a half. Repeat the process with the other hallacas or you can use two pots at the same time.

Step 7

Remove and drain them, preferably in the vertical position. Let cool and refrigerate until you are ready to eat. Since they take a lot of work, the custom is to prepare large quantities of hallacas. They can be kept in the fridge for up to 4 weeks.

Step 8

When you need to heat the hallacas again, boil water in a deep pot at high heat. Add the hallacas you wish to reheat (make sure the water is covering them). Lower the heat to medium and cook for 20 minutes. Remove the pot from the stove. Drain the hallacas, cut the yarn, remove the leaf and enjoy!

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Recipe Tags

Appetizers & Snacks Breakfast & Brunch Salads Main Dishes Side Dishes Desserts & Drinks BBQ & Grilling Game Day Movie Night CIA Recipes Main Dishes Side Dishes Salads Desserts & Drinks Appetizers & Snacks Summertime Caribbean Mexico South America Central America Spain Over 60

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