Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Sweet Corn Tamale Cakes [Cheesecake Factory]

Oh my goodness I love this dish.  It's from the Cheesecake Factory and is my favorite appetizer of all-time.  Normally, I wouldn't go for all these different salsas and flavors, but combined, they are amazing.  I love the corn cakes the most.  My mom made these for us when we were in California, and they were better than the restaurant's!  I've had my eye on this recipe before, but never made it because I was unsure of how it'd go, especially without a food processor.  But I talked to my mom about it, and she convinced me I could handle it.  It's a bit more of an involved recipe, but well worth it.  My cakes turned out a little crispy and not totally one solid piece, but they still tasted delicious.  I made five cakes in all, even though it's supposed to make 4. Whatever, we were happy to have a bonus one!  They kept find in the fridge overnight, so today the leftovers were still wonderful.  Zak said I should make mini ones to serve with these; he loves them that much!  Another recipe success!

Salsa Verde
2 tomatillos, with paper removed and chopped
4 oz. mild green chilies
1 green onion bunch, chopped
2 Tbl. fresh cilantro
1 1/4 tsp. sugar
1/4 tsp. ground cumin
1/4 tsp. salt
pinch of pepper

a nice, mild green

Tomato Salsa
1 medium tomato, diced
1 Tbl. Spanish onion, minced (I used red onion)
1 Tbl. fresh cilantro
1/2 - 1/4 tsp. lime juice
1/2 small jalapeno, minced
dash of salt & pepper

After I lightly blended the ingredients

Southwestern Sauce
1/2 c. mayo
1 tsp. white vinegar
1 tsp. water
3/4 tsp. sugar
1/2 tsp. chili powder
1/4 tsp. paprika
1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper
1/8 tsp. onion powder
dashes of: salt, pepper & garlic powder

Seriously, using a squirt bottle helped big time

Tamale Cakes
1 1/2 c. frozen corn (keep 1/2 c. whole & separate)
1/2 c. butter, softened
3 Tbl. sugar
1/8 tsp. salt
1/2 c. masa harina (corn flour)
2 Tbl. white flour

1/4 c. sour cream (4 Tbl.)
1/2 - 1 avocado, chopped
2 Tbl. fresh cilantro, chopped (I didn't use)

1.  Prepare the salsa verde by combining all ingredients in a food processor or use a hand blender.  Cover and chill.
2.  Prepare tomato salsa by combining all ingreidents in a small bowl.  I used my hand blender briefly to slightly mix the ingredients into a mushier? state.  I wanted it to be a bit more spreadable and in smaller pieces, if that makes sense.
3.  Prepare southwestern sauce by combining all ingredients in a small bowl.  Transfer to a squirt bottle, as it will make life much easier when assembling!  Chill.
4.  Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
5.  For the tamale cakes, coarsely puree 1 c. of the corn in a food processor.  Using a hand blender was kind of a disaster, and took awhile.  Next time I plan on using a blender, if I don't have a food processor before then.
6.  Once pureed, combine with softened butter, sugar and salt.  Blend well with electric mixer until smooth.
7.  Add masa and white flour and blend well.
8.  Mix in the remaining 1/2 c. of corn by hand.
9.  Measure 1/2 c. and form into 3-inch patties.  Using slightly wet hands helped a lot to form the patties.  I got 5 patties out of the mixture.
10.  Arrange on a baking sheet and bake 20 - 25 minutes, or until cakes are browned on the bottom.
11. Flip cakes with a spatula and bake for an additional 5 - 7 minutes or until slightly browned.
12.  To serve, spoon the salsa verde onto a platter.  Coat entire plate with about 1/4 inch of salsa.
13.  Arrange tamale cakes on top of the salsa verde.
14.  Add spoonful of tomato salsa on top of each cake, with a dollop of sour cream on top.
15.  Arrange avocado pieces on cake and drizzle both ways with southwestern sauce.

Step 1: assemble corn cakes on salsa verde

Step 2: Add tomato salsa and sour cream

Step 3: Add avocado and southwestern sauce

Nutritional Facts
servings per recipe: 5
amount per serving

Calories: 469.1
Total Fat: 32.4 g
Saturated Fat: 13.3 g
Polyunsaturated Fat: 1.6 g
Monounsaturated Fat: 11.5 g
Cholesterol: 61.8 mg
Sodium: 505 mg
Potassium: 435.3 mg
Total Carbohydrate: 44.1 g
Dietary Fiber: 5.3 g
Sugar: 14.9 g
Protein: 5 g
Vitamin A: 23 %
Vitamin C: 23.1 %
Calcium: 5.4 %
Iron: 6.2 %


Anonymous said...

Looks delicious, I am going to make it tonight.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for posting Rachel. I have just visited my son in US and googled these after trying for first time at the cheesecake factory . Will be my dish of the summer i think. Jenny, England

Anonymous said...

Trying these tonight. I love your photos, the step by step pics are very helpful.

Anonymous said...

That dish is super delish :-)

Anonymous said...

thank you so much for posting this. I had it at the cheesecake factory in nj, and have been trying to find the recipe ever since. Had almost given up and found your site, again thank you

Marlee said...

Are you suppose to thaw the frozen corn before using? My butter sugar salt corn purée mixture is sort of clumpy because the frozen corn made the butter clump together.

Rachel said...

Hi Marlee,

Sorry for the late response. I probably would thaw the corn before using it. I think I just let it sit out while I prepped everything else out. Hope it goes well!

And I'm so glad everyone else has enjoyed these! :)

Rachel said...

I tried your recipe last year, and it completely worked! I was told they were exquisite and let me tell you I loved them too!