These tamales, from Martin Morales's cookbook, Ceviche: Peruvian Kitchen, are much different from their Mexican brethren. Instead of using a dough made from masa and lard, they're made with pureed fresh corn, cooked down with butter, garlic, chili paste, and a touch of sugar. The corn paste gains structure and color from a couple of egg yolks and is then filled and steamed. Morales's tamales are still fairly light and fresh, despite the addition of the rich ingredients. A side of bright, spicy salsa criolla adds zip and crunch—don't skip it.
Why I picked this recipe: I've never made tamales using fresh corn.
What worked: I couldn't get enough of the super corn-y tamale dough.
What didn't: I had a hard time getting the corn totally smooth in my food processor. I'd definitely use a blender next time. If you're using fresh corn husks, you will probably end up needing to make smaller tamales.
Suggested tweaks: You'll have an easier time cooking the corn if you use a nonstick skillet. Morales suggests using this dough recipe for all kinds of tamale fillings, so be creative! I think it will work best with simple fillings, like this cheese one, to allow the corn flavor to shine.