Empanadas…

March 11th, 2009

One night, I was out with my friends and all of a sudden we lost a friend of ours.  We stop on the sidewalk, trying to figure out where he went and all of sudden, he appeared with a bag in his hand.  He had found some empanadas!  I had never tried one but that night I had my first taste of a chicken empanada.  It was delicious!

This summer, J’s mom taught us (J, his sister and her boyfriend) how to make different types of empanadas: beef, corn and ham, spinach and cheese.  The making of empanadas is fun… Standing around in the kitchen, we made fun of each other as we attempted to fold them… J’s mom is excellent at folding but the rest of us need a bit of practice.  All the types were really good.  I think I liked the corn and ham the best.

While in Argentina, J introduced me to the beautiful thing that is delivery empanadas… yes, that is right!  They deliver delicious, hot empanadas right to your door.  We tried about every type possible.  Overall, my favorite is onion and cheese… can’t get enough of them!

Argentine Empanadas

(from J’s Mom)

To make an empanada you need to make a dough and a filling. After they are put together, you can bake or fry them.

Dough

1 cup shortening, melted

2 eggs

2 cups of flour

2 teaspoons of salt dissolved in 1 cup of warm water

  1. Mix all together with hands.
  2. Leave for an hour at room temp.

In order to prepare the dough into empanadas, you need to make circles with 5 ½ in diameter. In the middle of the circles, you will place a tablespoon of filling.  There are two methods to make the circles.

Method #1:

  1. Divide into little balls
  2. Roll out with rolling pin into circles

Method #2:

  1. Roll out into one big piece
  2. Cut into circles (Diameter 5 ½ in). Use a bowl to be a guide
  3. Keep rolling out the dough and cutting circles until the dough is all used up.

Fillings

You can fill the empanadas with the same type of fillings or play with a few variations. Each filling recipe will make about 15 empanadas. After the preparation of the filling, you must let it cool. You can prepare the filling the day before and put it in the fridge.  You can even freeze it and thaw it when you want to make it.  

Beef Empanadas

  1. Fry 2 chopped onion and 1 crushed garlic clove with 2 tablespoon oil until tender
  2. Add 1 chopped red sweet bell pepper
  3. Mix in 1 lb ground beef
  4. Season with salt and pepper
  5. Add 2-3 chopped hard boiled eggs, ½ cup olives, ½ cup raisins and 1 teaspoon cumin.

Tuna or Chicken Empanadas:

  1. Fry 2 chopped onion and 1 crushed garlic clove with 2 tablespoon oil until tender
  2. Add 1 chopped red sweet bell pepper
  3. Mix in 1 lb ground chicken or canned tuna (2 10oz cans)
  4. Season with salt and pepper
  5. Add 2 fresh chopped tomatoes, 1 teaspoon Basil, and 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper.

Ham and Cheese Empanadas:

  1. Fry 1 chopped onion and 1 crushed garlic clove with 2 tablespoon oil until tender
  2. Mix in 1 lb ham (cut into little pieces or strips), 1 teaspoon nutmeg, 1 lb Ricotta cheese and 1 cup shredded provolone/mozzarella.

Corn Empanadas:

  1. Fry 1 chopped onion and 1 crushed garlic clove with 2 tablespoon oil until tender
  2. Add ½ lb ham (cut into pieces or strips) and 1 lb corn
  3. Season with Salt and pepper
  4. Mix in 1 teaspoon nutmeg
  5. In 1 ½ cups milk dissolve 2-3 tablespoons flour.
  6. Mix in with the corn mixture.

Spinach Emapandas:

  1. Fry 1 chopped onion and 1 crushed garlic clove with 2 tablespoon oil until tender
  2. Mix in 1 lb mushrooms or 1 lb spinach and 1 cup of cheese.
  3. Add 1/2 lb ham and/or hardboiled egg, if you want.
  4. Season with salt and pepper.

Onion Empanadas:

  1. Fry 2 chopped onions and 1 crushed garlic clove with 2 tablespoon oil until tender
  2. Mix in ½ lb ham and ½ lb of shredded cheese
  3. Add two eggs to pull it together
  4. Season with salt and pepper

Putting them together

  1. Lay each pastry on a flat surface
  2. Place 1 tablespoon in the center of the circular dough
  3. Fold dough over in half, wetting the edges a little with water and make edges meet in a semi-circle over the filling
  4. Press edge with fork or fold over with fingers.

To see how to fold properly check out here.

In Argentina, they fold the empanadas by folding over with their fingers.  This is called Repulgue.  The empanadas come with a guide so that you know what type you are trying.  If you make different fillings of empanadas, then you can differentiate them by a different fold or design.  What we did was poke holes in the empanadas with a toothpick in order to differentiate the types.  For example, 2 for spinach, 3 for corn, and 4 for beef.

FRY:

  1. Heat 3 cups of oil in medium high heat. Be careful with frying because it is very hot and you can burn yourself.
  2. Put empanadas in hot oil until gold.
  3. Remove and place on paper towel to absorb the oil.

BAKE:

  1. Spray with vegetable spray
  2. Bake at 350° for 20 min until golden.


3 Responses to “Empanadas…”

  1. VeggieGirl on March 11, 2009 4:38 pm

    YUM!!

  2. Manggy on March 13, 2009 12:45 pm

    Oh, don’t those look perfect? :) In the Philippines we have a few variations: my favorite is the mix of cubed chicken, potatoes, carrots, and raisins :)

  3. I should be sleeping… at Just Get Floury on May 1, 2010 11:03 pm

    [...] equal balls, about 1/4 cup of dough. 3. Roll them out into 6 inch circles. 4. Using the process for Empanadas put about a tablespoon of the filling and fold over. 5. Bake for 15 minutes at 450 until [...]

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