Happy New Year!
I usually make tamales every year around New Year’s Day so this year I decided to make them for our dinner. My favorite tamales are Reata Restaurant’s tenderloin tamales with pecan mash and sun dried tomato cream sauce. A couple years ago I found their recipe and made their tamales a couple times. I did modify it by using sirloin instead of tenderloin and I changed the pecan mash. The pecan mash is a mixture of pecans, peppers, cilantro and garlic. I make it with very little oil, toast the pecans and hand chop everything instead of processing it with a bunch of olive oil. The sun dried tomato cream sauce is too good to modify and consists of garlic, butter, sun dried tomatoes, cream, and parmesan cheese. I also made the green chile cheese grits. These are grits mixed with butter, eggs, cheese, cilantro, peppers and garlic, then baked in the oven. The combination of sirloin tamales and chile cheese grits was delicious.

For dessert I finally used my Christmas present, a kitchen torch, from Steve. It’s a little scary to use but once I got the hang of it everything went fine. The creme brulee was fantastic. My daughter Alexandra told me it was her favorite dessert so I can expect to make it often now.
I made the custard earlier in the day so it had plenty of time to get cold. The brulee part just involved putting sugar on top and then torching it.