Mar 25, 2024 - Food and Drink

The sister tamale to Chicago's mother-in-law

A tamale with sauce on a baguette.

The guajolota sandwich at Tamales Mi Chula. Photo: Monica Eng/Axios

If you think Chicagoans are the only people carb-loving enough to serve tamales on a starchy bun you haven't tried the guajolota ($7.99) at Albany Park's Tamales Mi Chula (4638 N. Kedzie).

Catch up quick: Chicago's version — called a mother-in-law and famously served at Fat Johnnie's on Western — features a corn roll tamale on a hot dog bun with chili, but Mi Chula classes it up with two Mexican tamales on a crusty telera bun topped with creamy salsa.

Monica's verdict: Both versions deliver way too much starch for my taste, but the guajolota (meaning a female turkey) can make for a filling breakfast — especially with the traditional hot cup of atole — on a chilly Chicago morning.

A tamale covered in sauce, tomatoes, peppers and onions in a hot dog bun.
Chicago's sister to the guajolota, called the mother-in-law. Photo: Courtesy of David Hammond from the book "Made In Chicago."
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