The Secret To Wrapping Tamales, According To Eva Longoria - Exclusive

As the winter draws nearer, so do our favorite seasonal meals and desserts. What does Eva Longoria make for the holidays? Tamales — lots of tamales.

Longoria has a knack for the food business with her fun Instagram recipes and tequila brand. Now, the "Desperate Housewives" star has teamed up with Maite Gomez-Rejón for a new podcast titled "Hungry for History." The podcast introduces the history and food behind Mexico's most prominent dishes and ingredients (did you know that vanilla originated from Mexico?).

In an exclusive interview with Tasting Table, Longoria explained exactly what inspired the podcast and revealed her favorite and most controversial food pairings — for example, you're on team Eva if you enjoy flour tortillas over corn tortillas. While the actress enjoys the occasional taco, there is one food her family just can't get enough of, especially around the holidays. Longoria revealed that she makes eight different kinds of tamales, with the pork varieties being her favorite, and she gave us some tips on how to make them turn out perfectly. 

Use less masa in your tamales

Eva Longoria mentioned to Tasting Table that a tamale recipe is "labor-intensive" and requires an assembly line of "cousins, aunts and uncles." "The Young and the Restless" star continued, "When you make tamales, you're making a thousand, and everybody divides them up at the end of the day." Of course, dinner leftovers are vital to any successful gathering!

With Longoria's vast experience in making the meal, she revealed her secret to wrapping the perfect tamale. The common ingredients for a tamale include a corn-based dough stuffed with an array of meats or beans and cheese (per Tastes Better from Scratch).

Longoria explained that she prefers "less masa [the outer layer] and it rolls better when you have less masa. You have to have a proportionate amount of masa and filling" for a good tamale. She also advises not to bread the tamale too much because that leads to a less favorable taste and difficulty rolling. 

As for any secret ingredients? "Unfortunately, you still have to use lard. I'm sure there's healthier ways, but the secret ingredient really is lard," she said. There you have it — lard and less masa are the secrets to amazing tamales. Now you are ready for the impending holiday season, if you want to celebrate like Eva Longoria's family.

Listen to iHeartMedia's "Hungry for History" podcast on the website. Check out Eva Longoria's Instagram page to keep up with her latest projects.