tamale was our Word of the Day on 12/07/2012. Hear the podcast!
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Recent Examples of tamale from the Web
The express lunch, featuring a choice of 16 dishes, starts at $9.95 (pork tamales) and tops out at $12.95 (prime steak tacos).
Since 1928, Berryhill's tamales have been a Houston tradition.
Garrett was willing and might have grown up tending a maize field, raising chickens and living on tamales.
On Tuesdays and Fridays diners come for baho (yuca and steamed pork), on weekends for nacatamales (giant custard-soft tamales packed with meats and eggs).
The tamales at Yvolina's Tamales are wonders -- plump and airy, yet light and not greasy.
Scrappy as ever, Greer made tamales, selling them on the side of the road.
Drinks: The same spice used in the tamales adds plenty of kick to the Red Hot Bloody Mary while their spin on the mimosa trades out the sparkling wine for plum cider (both $8).
While some designs played off the establishment’s name, others referred to the product being sold, like a tamale, ice cream cone or flower pot.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'tamale.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
tamale Has Origins in South America
Hot tamale is sometimes used figuratively, as in our second example, to suggest sexual attractiveness, but it's the word's literal use that puts it in an interesting category. How many English food words can you name that derive from Nahuatl, a group of languages spoken by native peoples of Mexico and Central America? You've probably guessed that "tamale" gives you one; it came to us (by way of Mexican Spanish) from the Nahuatl "tamalli," a word for steamed cornmeal dough. Add to the menu "chili" (from "chīlli," identifying all those fiery peppers); "chocolate" (from "chocolātl," first used for a beverage made from chocolate and water); "guacamole" (from āhuacatl, meaning "avocado," plus mōlli, meaning "sauce"); and "tomato" (from "tomatl"). Top it all off with "chipotle" (a smoked and dried pepper), from "chīlli" and "pōctli" (meaning "something smoked").
TAMALE Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of tamale for English Language Learners
: a Mexican food that consists of seasoned ground meat or beans rolled in cornmeal, wrapped in a corn husk, and steamed
TAMALE Defined for Kids
Seen and Heard
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