Sep 21, 2012

Frozen Friday: Fresh & Easy - Beef Tamale

Fresh & Easy's Beef Tamale with Tomatillo Chili Sauce caught my eye as a lesser chosen frozen meal with an easy price. It features a corn tamale filled with seasoned beef, covered in a green tomatillo sauce and cheddar cheese and served with a side of Mexican-style seasoned rice.

All of Fresh & Easy's individual-serving frozen entrees are $1.99 each.

I didn't notice much in the way of cheese on my tamale. I think it may have been inexplicably MIA. I did get some onion bits in my tomatillo sauce though. The sauce is a bit like a salsa verde with a lighter, less tangy flavor than red tomato-based sauces. It provided a nice accompaniment to the tamale and had a little kick to it.

If you've never tried a tamale, it's pretty much formed masa dough steamed or boiled around a seasoned meaty center. The shell is similar to a corn tortilla but moister and thicker with a slighty crumbly texture. It is very much a texture food, some people like the feel of it and some don't.

Fresh and Easy's version is the smallest I've seen but it turns out well. The shredded beef inside is seasoned well and slightly spicy. The corn to meat ratio is good and well-balanced. It all comes together nicely.

The rice was tasty too and interspersed with black beans. Usually, Mexican-style rice features tomato or tomato sauce for flavor, but this version was all herbs and spices. It did turn out a little dry around the edges of the container.

Overall, Fresh & Easy's Beef Tamale was pretty good and turned out quite decently. The ingredients worked well together and, between the rice, the sauce, and the tamale, there were plenty of flavors and textures to keep it interesting. I would have liked that missing cheese though.

Nutritional Info - Fresh & Easy Beef Tamale (284g)
Calories - 400 (from Fat - 160)
Fat - 17g (Saturated Fat - 4g)
Sodium - 1000mg
Carbs - 51g (Sugar - 3g)
Protein - 11g