This article originally posted on our Spanish-language site, La Prensa Sonoma atwww.laprensasonoma.com.
Martina Álvarez works in the agricultural world of grape cultivation, but in her free time, she makes Oaxacan tamales for her friends, family and sometimes, to sell.

The traditional Catholic celebration of La Candelaria consists of two parts: on Jan. 6 bread representing the King’s crown is served, with a small figurine of baby Jesus baked inside, and the person who gets the slice of bread with the figurine must throw a tamale party on Feb. 2. This celebration signifies a cleansing of debt, as the Catholic connection is the cleansing of Virgin Mary when Jesus is presented at the Temple of Jerusalem 40 days after Christmas.

The tamales Martina makes have traditional tastes from Triqui people in Oaxaca.


If you want to call Martina to order a dozen tamales, chicken or beef with red mole, call her at 707-529-1036. The cost per dozen is $20, if you pick them up. And $25 if you want them delivered to your home. Enjoy!