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1  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / The Swap Gallery / STS Spring Market 2015 **Gallery** on: March 15, 2015 12:23:39 PM
Post your "sold" stuff here!
2  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / Craft Swaps / STS Spring Market 2015 **SHOPS only!** on: March 15, 2015 12:03:59 PM
Have lots of crafty items to "sell"?  Want to "buy" fantastic crafts and supplies from a bunch of super cool crafters? Then this is the swap for you!

Swap name: Shop the Swap Spring Market 2015  
Craftster member who is organizing this swap: alteredmommy
Craftster members who are the backup organizers for this swap: loves2experiment
Sign-up date range: 03/15/2015 to 04/05/2015
Date to send item by: Once someone claims from you, you have ONE WEEK to mail the item. The swap runs through to May 11 (**Please note that the last week May 4- 11 will be for over/under 3 point shops only)
Limited to a certain number of people? 50
Non-U.S. participants allowed? Yes! Be aware that by signing up for this swap you are agreeing to ship items internationally if they are claimed by someone outside of your country

Additional Age requirement? YES **This swap is open to crafters who are 18+**

Gallery!
Discussion Thread!


Swap Organizer himself/herself meets these conditions:
- Has fully read the Swap Info Guide: YES
- Has successfully completed two swaps as a participant: YES
- Is not organizing more than three swaps right now: YES
- Will recruit a co-organizer or give all details to a Swap Moderator if this swap has more than 25 participants: YES
- Is at least 18 years old: YES


Swap Organizer will check each participant to make sure they meet these conditions:
- Has been a member for at least one month: YES
- Has posted at least 15 times: YES
- Has completed one swap successfully before signing up for multiple swaps at a time: YES
- Has completed 2 swaps with positive feedback YES
- Is not currently signed up for more than five swaps: YES
- Does not have any negative feedback: YES
- Participant has agreed that he/she is at least 18 years old: YES
- If within the US, understands that Delivery Confirmation number is required for this swap: YES
- If outside the US, understands that a mailing receipt copy is required for this swap: YES

All swappers MUST be pre-approved for this swap!

GENERAL
The Shop the Swap (or STS) is a different kind of swap in that we start with finished items.  We use a point system in which you price items in points that you receive when you sell your shop item to another swapper.  Once you have sent your claim out , you can use those points to buy any available item from any open shop in the swap.   Like the real world, you cant spend points that you dont have (no overdraft here) and you cant hoard your points under your mattress (you must close and go shopping when you have +7 points).  
**Please note that the format for this round is a little different.  Signups will be 3 weeks until April 5/2015 with the swap running to May 11/2015.    Unlike the past Shop the Swaps, you will not be able to leave before the end of the swap and you must be at 3 points upon the close of the swap.  If you are traveling or otherwise unable to keep your shop open, you can close for a short period of time (a week)

SHOPS
- Post a shop in this thread with at least 5 finished, handcrafted items for the other swappers to choose from.  You can also post a small amount of craft supply items at the bottom of your shop.  **Custom items can be offered, but must be finished and sent in a timely manner, so keep this in mind and only offer custom items that you can finish quickly.  Please let us know if you will be sending late.
-Handcrafted items from other people may be offered in your shop, BUT  be aware of the potential of hurt feelings when selling items made for you in other swaps.  This is a high profile swap that many people see.  Crafted items from others must be credited with the name of the creator or you will be requested to remove that item.
-Each item should have a SHORT identifiable title, description and picture.  Each item should be priced between 1 and 3 points.  Groups of items can be priced at a choice of 2 for 1 (or 3 for 1 etc).  Charge what you think is fair for your crafted item, considering time/supply cost/popularity.
-Check peoples wishlists and use the discussion thread for brainstorming any new items to offer in your shop.

PLEASE SEE THE NEXT POST FOR SHOP FORMATS

POINTS
-all persons new to the swap receive 3 points to spend.  This is a STS loan and you must leave with 3 points (in effect pay the loan back) for positive feedback.  
-Your shop must be open before you can spend your points in other shops.
-Remember there are no guarantees that claims will be made from your shop.  To make a sale you may need to adjust your prices or offer new crafted items/supplies.
-Everytime someone claims from you, you will get whatever point price you have listed for it.  List the claim at the bottom of your shop and add the points into pending and to your points total.  You cannot spend pending points.
-Once you have sent the claim, move the points into current.  All current points are spendable so go shopping!
-When you have +7 points (a TOTAL of current and pending) you must close your shop temporarily.  Edit your shop post to put CLOSED at the top in big bold letters that people will see.
-Once you go shopping (with your current points, you may have to ship first)and spend your points down to 5 or less, you can re-open your shop.
-Each round  claims to and from you should be listed with your point tally at the bottom of your shop.  See the next post for the proper shop format.


PLEASE SEE THE NEXT POST FOR CLAIM/SEND/RECEIVE PM FORMATS

FEEDBACK
Ongoing
-If any prior claims go missing you may be required to remake/refund the points/offer something else in your shop if you have no DC# or shipping receipt.  If you have a valid DC# or shipping receipt it is your decision whether you will replace the item or have me arrange an angel


Final
-Positive feedback will be given after the swap closing date of May 1/2015 if you have 3 points and all your claims have been received.
-Negative feedback will be given for closing this swap with less than 3 points and/or not sending claims made to you.  If you need points, have a sale, let people know in the discussion thread, offer some supplies.  
-Spend your points down to 3 before the close of this round.  If you leave with more than 3 points, any points above 3 will go into the inflation fund.  Again, reminder pm's to join will not be sent out.  These points will not be returned to you should you join the STS in a future round.  So go shopping!

SHIPPING
-Remember that you have ONE WEEK to ship from the day you receive a claim.
-All items are to be shipped AFTER an official claim is received; please do not ship custom items before we receive an official STS claim for them.  Items shipped before they are claimed will not be covered under our angel policy should they go missing.
- DC# are required on all claims if eligible AS PER CRAFTSTER SWAP RULES; if sending internationally please keep your postal receipt until your item is received.   Thin items can be padded with a plastic grocery bag or something similiar to make them thick enough for a DC#.  If your item has not been received within a reasonable time (3-4 weeks domestic; 4-5 weeks international) an angel can be arranged if you have a DC# or postal receipt.  If not you will be required to remake or offer something else from your shop and resend.
-Also remember to read the Swap Info Guide to find out how to ship your item and other details about participating in a swap.


COMMUNICATION
-It is your responsibility to keep relevant people informed of your shop and claim status  
-all claim/send/receive pms must be sent to both organizers as well as to the person you are claiming from/sending to.  Please check you're outgoing pm's to ensure that everyone has received a copy!!!!!!
-Poor communication will be noted in your feedback.  This includes not informing the organizers/other swappers of claim status via the correct claim format; not posting in the discussion thread.
-Do join in the lively conversation on the discussion thread which can be found here:   http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=438059.0

PLEASE PM THE ORGANIZERS alteredmommy, loves2experiment WITH THE FOLLOWING
INFORMATION IF YOU WISH TO PARTICIPATE

(Make the title of your PM -  STS Spring Market 2015 SIGNUP)

Name of swap: Shop the Swap Spring Market 2015
Craftster username:
I am at least eighteen years old:
I have completed 2 swaps with positive feedback:
Email address:
Real name and mailing address (formatted for mailing):

Do you have at least 5 crafted items to start out with?
Have you read through the first 2 posts of guidelines/rules?
When will this swap be closed for claims?
What information needs to be kept current at the end of your shop?
Marshmallow chicks or chocolate bunnies?


Feel free to ask alteredmommy or loves2experiment if you have any questions!!

Shops from previous rounds:
Winter Market 2014   http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=435866.0

Spring Market 2014   http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=432211.0

Winter Market 2013   http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=427289.0

Spring Market 2013   http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=419802.0



3  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / New Swap Theme Ideas / 2015 Shop the Swap discussion thread on: February 11, 2015 03:39:05 PM
The Spring 2015 STS round will be here in a month or two so lets talk about all the fabulous things we need or make!

What dates work for people?

STS Spring Market 2015
sign ups March 15 - April 5  Swapping open to May 11 (catch up week for over/under 3 points May 4-11)

Gallery

4  Calls for Swap Angels / Swap Angel Archive / Angel needed for Disney Swap Round 12-FOUND! on: January 23, 2015 10:58:43 AM
Swap Name: Disney Swap Round 12
Original Thread link: http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=434554.0
Gallery thread link: http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=435281.0#axzz3BX5NMy5r


We need 1 angel for RebeccaJay for a Disney themed swap!  International shipping to England  Thank you to emisaurus

This was a 5 pt swap (one large and either 2 smalls or a medium) of Disney themed items!

Rebecca wanted to receive items for her home in a "grown up" Disney theme and loves Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin, Sleeping Beauty and a lot more!

(She does not care to receive clothing, jewelry or dolls)

The original send date for this swap was August 29, 2014 so RebeccaJay has been waiting a very long time.  For this reason I would like a send deadline of 2 weeks.  Please pm me if you are interested in angeling for this very patient Craftster Smiley



5  Calls for Swap Angels / Swap Angel Archive / FOC Second Chance Swap 2015-a chance to redeem negatives! on: January 07, 2015 03:53:01 PM
The FOC Second Chance Swap 2015 is now open.  Please carefully read the instructions as this "swap" differs from regular swaps.  Good luck!

eta:  the FOC second chance swap is now closed.
6  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / The Swap Gallery / Shop the Swap Winter Market 2014 - Gallery on: September 26, 2014 06:18:34 PM
Show us what you've sold!

Shop thread  http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=435866.0
Discussion thread  http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=431768.0

Outstanding Claims Winter Market 2014

A2K to Grab a coffee - custom sewing  sent Dec 4





7  Craft Swaps / ARCHIVE OF SWAPS THAT ARE TOTALLY FINISHED / STS Winter Market **Shops** (SU to Oct 10; closes Nov 24) on: September 26, 2014 06:17:15 PM
Have lots of crafty items to "sell"?  Want to "buy" fantastic crafts and supplies from a bunch of super cool crafters? Then this is the swap for you!

Swap name: Shop the Swap Winter Market 2014  
Craftster member who is organizing this swap: alteredmommy
Craftster members who are the backup organizers for this swap: loves2experiment
Sign-up date range: 09/26/2014 to 10/10/2014
Date to send item by: Once someone claims from you, you have ONE WEEK to mail the item. The swap runs through to November 24 (**Please note that the last week November 17-24 will be for over/under 3 point shops only)
Limited to a certain number of people? 50
Non-U.S. participants allowed? Yes! Be aware that by signing up for this swap you are agreeing to ship items internationally if they are claimed by someone outside of your country

Additional Age requirement? YES **This swap is open to crafters who are 18+**

Gallery!
Discussion Thread!


Swap Organizer himself/herself meets these conditions:
- Has fully read the Swap Info Guide: YES
- Has successfully completed two swaps as a participant: YES
- Is not organizing more than three swaps right now: YES
- Will recruit a co-organizer or give all details to a Swap Moderator if this swap has more than 25 participants: YES
- Is at least 18 years old: YES


Swap Organizer will check each participant to make sure they meet these conditions:
- Has been a member for at least one month: YES
- Has posted at least 15 times: YES
- Has completed one swap successfully before signing up for multiple swaps at a time: YES
- Has completed 2 swaps with positive feedback YES
- Is not currently signed up for more than five swaps: YES
- Does not have any negative feedback: YES
- Participant has agreed that he/she is at least 18 years old: YES
- If within the US, understands that Delivery Confirmation number is required for this swap: YES
- If outside the US, understands that a mailing receipt copy is required for this swap: YES



All swappers MUST be pre-approved for this swap!

GENERAL
The Shop the Swap (or STS) is a different kind of swap in that we start with finished items.  We use a point system in which you price items in points that you receive when you sell your shop item to another swapper.  Once you have sent your claim out , you can use those points to buy any available item from any open shop in the swap.   Like the real world, you cant spend points that you dont have (no overdraft here) and you cant hoard your points under your mattress (you must close and go shopping when you have +7 points).  
**Please note that the format for this round is a little different.  Signups will be 3 weeks until October 10/14 with the swap running to November 24/2014.    Unlike the past Shop the Swaps, you will not be able to leave before the end of the swap and you must be at 3 points upon the close of the swap.  If you are traveling or otherwise unable to keep your shop open, you can close for a short period of time (a week)

SHOPS
- Post a shop in this thread with at least 5 finished, handcrafted items for the other swappers to choose from.  You can also post a small amount of craft supply items at the bottom of your shop.  **Custom items can be offered, but must be finished and sent in a timely manner, so keep this in mind and only offer custom items that you can finish quickly.  Please let us know if you will be sending late.
-Handcrafted items from other people may be offered in your shop, BUT  be aware of the potential of hurt feelings when selling items made for you in other swaps.  This is a high profile swap that many people see.  Crafted items from others must be credited with the name of the creator or you will be requested to remove that item.
-Each item should have a SHORT identifiable title, description and picture.  Each item should be priced between 1 and 3 points.  Groups of items can be priced at a choice of 2 for 1 (or 3 for 1 etc).  Charge what you think is fair for your crafted item, considering time/supply cost/popularity.
-Check peoples wishlists and use the discussion thread for brainstorming any new items to offer in your shop.

PLEASE SEE THE NEXT POST FOR SHOP FORMATS

POINTS
-all persons new to the swap receive 3 points to spend.  This is a STS loan and you must leave with 3 points (in effect pay the loan back) for positive feedback.  
-Your shop must be open before you can spend your points in other shops.
-Remember there are no guarantees that claims will be made from your shop.  To make a sale you may need to adjust your prices or offer new crafted items/supplies.
-Everytime someone claims from you, you will get whatever point price you have listed for it.  List the claim at the bottom of your shop and add the points into pending and to your points total.  You cannot spend pending points.
-Once you have sent the claim, move the points into current.  All current points are spendable so go shopping!
-When you have +7 points (a TOTAL of current and pending) you must close your shop temporarily.  Edit your shop post to put CLOSED at the top in big bold letters that people will see.
-Once you go shopping (with your current points, you may have to ship first)and spend your points down to 5 or less, you can re-open your shop.
-Each round  claims to and from you should be listed with your point tally at the bottom of your shop.  See the next post for the proper shop format.


PLEASE SEE THE NEXT POST FOR CLAIM/SEND/RECEIVE PM FORMATS

FEEDBACK
Ongoing
-If any prior claims go missing you may be required to remake/refund the points/offer something else in your shop if you have no DC# or shipping receipt.  If you have a valid DC# or shipping receipt it is your decision whether you will replace the item or have me arrange an angel


Final
-Positive feedback will be given after the swap closing date of Nov 24 if you have 3 points and all your claims have been received.
-Negative feedback will be given for closing this swap with less than 3 points and/or not sending claims made to you.  If you need points, have a sale, let people know in the discussion thread, offer some supplies.  
-Spend your points down to 3 before the close of this round.  If you leave with more than 3 points, any points above 3 will go into the inflation fund.  Again, reminder pm's to join will not be sent out.  These points will not be returned to you should you join the STS in a future round.  So go shopping!

SHIPPING
-Remember that you have ONE WEEK to ship from the day you receive a claim.
-All items are to be shipped AFTER an official claim is received; please do not ship custom items before we receive an official STS claim for them.  Items shipped before they are claimed will not be covered under our angel policy should they go missing.
- DC# are required on all claims if eligible AS PER CRAFTSTER SWAP RULES; if sending internationally please keep your postal receipt until your item is received.   Thin items can be padded with a plastic grocery bag or something similiar to make them thick enough for a DC#.  If your item has not been received within a reasonable time (3-4 weeks domestic; 4-5 weeks international) an angel can be arranged if you have a DC# or postal receipt.  If not you will be required to remake or offer something else from your shop and resend.
-Also remember to read the Swap Info Guide to find out how to ship your item and other details about participating in a swap.


COMMUNICATION
-It is your responsibility to keep relevant people informed of your shop and claim status  
-all claim/send/receive pms must be sent to both organizers as well as to the person you are claiming from/sending to.  Please check you're outgoing pm's to ensure that everyone has received a copy!!!!!!
-Poor communication will be noted in your feedback.  This includes not informing the organizers/other swappers of claim status via the correct claim format; not posting in the discussion thread.
-Do join in the lively conversation on the discussion thread which can be found here:   http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=431768.0

PLEASE PM THE ORGANIZERS alteredmommy, loves2experiment WITH THE FOLLOWING
INFORMATION IF YOU WISH TO PARTICIPATE

(Make the title of your PM -  STS Winter Market 2014 SIGNUP)

Name of swap: Shop the Swap Winter Market 2014
Craftster username:
I am at least eighteen years old:
I have completed 2 swaps with positive feedback:
Email address:
Real name and mailing address (formatted for mailing):

Do you have at least 5 crafted items to start out with?
Have you read through the first 2 posts of guidelines/rules?
When will this swap be closed for claims?
What information needs to be kept current at the end of your shop?
What is your favourite thing about Winter?




Feel free to ask alteredmommy or loves2experiment if you have any questions!!

Shops from previous rounds:
Spring Market 2014   http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=432211.0

Winter Market 2013   http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=427289.0

Spring Market 2013   http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=419802.0

Winter Market 2012   http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=414351.0

8   / MORE ART, LESS CRAFT / Meet our new featured member andralynn! on: August 28, 2014 11:09:42 AM
I'm pleased to announce our new featured artist in More Art, Less Craft andralynn!!

A member of Craftster for almost 4 years, andralynn has shared many of her whimsical animals and monsters with us.  I enjoy the little back stories she includes with many of her creations, here are some of my favourites:


Storybook painting


A Little Monster


The Housekeepers

Bio
I live in Paris, Texas (which has its own Eiffel Tower complete with a big red cowboy hat!) and work from my little home studio as a full-time artist and writer. I have sold art to two major TV shows, have been commissioned to create art by children's hospitals, designed art for some children's textile companies, and just recently finished illustrating a children's book that will be available at the end of the year. Oh, and I love broccoli.

What mediums do you work with and which is your favourite?
I mostly work with acrylics, but I also love to draw using ink and markers.

Where do you find your inspiration?
I have two VERY imaginative little girls who provide endless inspiration with their stories and antics. Every day is an adventure filled with dragon hunting, picnics in magical forests, and tea parties with unicorns and fairies -- it's impossible not to be inspired with those two around!

Have you had any formal art training?

No, not really...but I have been making art for as long as I can remember, starting with scribbling on the walls of my bedroom (Sorry, mom). I only started my career as an artist about three years ago, and it's been a crazy ride ever since!

Do you make time for regular art making?
I paint or draw every day. I am a complete and total art-aholic. Yes, that is a word. I'm sure of it. 

Some of your best tips for aspiring artists?

Just make art. Forget what everyone else says or thinks. Just make art. If other people love what you make, that's great. If they don't, who cares. Just make art. If you love what you do, everything else will follow.

Of everything you've posted on Craftster what is your personal favourite?
I love creating monster paintings, because they're just pure imagination with no rules whatsoever. The Housekeepers are a particular favorite of mine. Not only are they friendly, they are noble and good too. 


What is your favourite project posted by another Craftster member?
That is a really hard question, because they are so many awesome projects to choose from. But if you twisted my arm, I'd choose this one because I am a HUGE Doctor Who fan and I am in awe of anyone who can sew like this:The Tenth Doctor Doll by FabledStitches

Thank you for sharing with us andralynn
9   / MORE ART, LESS CRAFT / Featured Projects 2014 (Jan - April) on: July 17, 2014 07:53:12 AM
Featured Projects 1st part of 2014 (Jan -April)

Thank you for your wonderful contributions to the More Art, Less Craft corner of the Craftster community!  Our Featured Projects were chosen by the Craftster community via the "this rocks" button and they do indeed rock!


Birds and Bugs and Butterflies by Smeddley


First Stippled ATC by My_RubySlippers


Moonlit by Cryssoleil


This Hedgie Presents "The Countess of Craftasticallness" by jillybeans


Dreamcatcher Art Piece on Driftwood by Eveamlizya


Recent Soft Pastel craze - Animals! by TheDaytimeHeroes


Painting with pink by andralynn


Pet Portraits-A Greyhound and Two Italian Greyhounds by gotgrey

10  COOKING / Recipes and Cooking Tips / Green Chile Chicken Tamales on: May 04, 2014 12:06:37 PM


Tamales are my absolute favourite Mexican food and something that I rarely if ever see up here in Northern Canada.  I crave them more often than my once a year tamale gorge fest disguised as a vacation down south so I found a great Rick Bayless recipe and have been making my own for Cinco de Mayo, Christmas and other special occasions like Tuesdays Wink  They are a bit time consuming and a helper or two will make your tamale day go way faster!  Here are the ingredients you'll need:

wrappers
1-8 oz pkg of dried corn husks (I found some at Trader Joe's last time I was in the states) or you can use squares of tin foil which will do the trick.   If using corn husks you will also need some kitchen string cut in 8-10 inch lengths to tie them shut.


Filling

4 cups of shredded chicken (I use a rotisserie chicken)
2 small cans of chopped green chilis
1 bottle of green Mexican sauce (tomatillo)
2/3 cup rough chopped fresh cilantro
4 large garlic cloves, peeled and rough chopped
salt to taste
2 cups chicken broth
1 1/2 tablespoons of oil


Batter


1/2 cup Crisco vegetable shortening.  If you want to go authentic use pork lard
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons salt
3 1/2 cups dried masa harina mixed with 2 1/4 cups of hot water
1 to 1 1/2 cups chicken broth

Prepare the corn husks
First of all you need to cover the corn husks with very hot water in a big pot, weigh down with a plate to keep them submerged.  Let them soak a couple of hours to soften up and become pliable.

Prepare the filling:

Puree the chopped green chilis and the garlic cloves in a food processor until smooth.  Add in the jar of green sauce, process till it is a smooth sauce again.  Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over medium high.  When its hot, add the puree all at once and stir until it looks thicker and darker, about 5 minutes.  Add 2 cups of chicken broth and simmer over medium heat until thick enough to coat a spoon, at least 10 minutes.  Taste and season highly with salt, around 2 teaspoons.  The filling will balance out the blandness of the masa dough so you can add a lot of taste to it.  Stir in the chicken and cilantro and cool completely.


Prepare the batter/dough

A kitchen aid mixer is invaluable for this step!

With an electric mixer on medium-high speed, beat the shortening with 2 teaspoons salt and the baking powder until light in texture, around a minute.  Continue beating as you add the reconstituted masa in 3 additions.  Reduce the speed to medium-low and add 1 cup of chicken broth.  Continue beating, check the dough after a couple of minutes - a 1/2 teaspoon dollop of batter should float in a cup of cold water.  If it doesn't float yet, beat another minute and check again.  Then beat in enough of the remaining 1/2 cup of broth to give the mixture the consistency of soft (not runny) cake batter; it should hold its shape on a spoon and be more like a thick, soft paste.  Taste and add a bit more salt if you want.  

Make the tamales!

First pick out 24-30 of the largest and most pliable husks-that are at least 6 inches across on the wider end and 6-7 inches long.  If you can't find enough good ones you can overlap a couple to make a larger surface.  Pat the husks dry on a clean kitchen towel.  I set up area on my kitchen table with husks, pre cut strings, filling and masa dough and a tray for the finished tamales.


Spread about 1/4 cup of the batter into about a 4 inch square on the corn husk leaving at least a 1 1/2 inch border of open husk around it.  Place it a little closer to the wide top of the husk.  Then put about 1 1/2 tablespoons of the filling down the center of the batter.


Pick up the 2 long sides of the cornhusk and bring them together in a rolling motion so the batter meets and wraps around the filling. Try and make sure all the filling is enclosed so it doesn't leak out while steaming.  You can fix any little open spots with a spoon and a bit of batter but I warn you, tamale batter is sticky so you don't want to fool too much with it.  


Then fold each side over the filling and fold up the bottom 1 1/2 inch empty section (the skinnier pointy part) and use a piece of string to tie shut.  You should have a fairly tightly closed little tamale package with an open top (be careful not to squish the filling out of the top though-there should be an inch or so of open space)  Don't tie the tamales too tightly as they will need a bit of room to expand.

Set up your steamer


I don't have a giant tamale steamer so I use my big stock pot with a round wire rack set on a smaller steamer insert (you could use custard cups or sturdy coffee cups.  I like something metal personally, but the steam does need to go through whatever you choose)  I line the pot with some of the leftover corn husks, leaving a few tiny spaces between them so the steam water doesn't pool under the tamales.

Steam those tamales!


Stand the tamales on their folded bottoms in the prepared steamer.  I use small rolls of tin foil to both help keep them upright as well as separate them a bit.  Cover the tamales with another layer of leftover corn husks then put the lid on.  Steam over a constant medium heat for about 1 1/4 hours-depending on the size of tamales you make.  Giant tamales can take up to 4 hours to steam.  Watch carefully that all the water doesn't boil away, I add boiling water from my kettle as necessary.  You can tell that the tamales are done when the husk peels away from the masa easily.  If it still is sticking, steam a little longer.

Once they are done, let them stand in the steamer off the heat for a few minutes to firm up.  Then crack open a cerveza,  unwrap your tamales and serve with more green sauce.  Try and share with worthy people Grin



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