Empanadas

Updated: Jun 25

With 3 different filling options


Inspired by The Authentic Mexican Cookbook

Empanadas have always been a favorite in my household because of their small, snack-sized shape and variety of filling possibilities, which is why I included three options here. Originally from Argentina and Chile, these pastries are similar to hand pies; however, the fillings traditionally include spices that are typical of Latin cuisine. The combination of cinnamon and cloves alongside more savory flavors such as garlic and vinegar stay true to the sweet and savory composition of traditional empanada recipes. For an extra crunch, I added chopped almonds to each of the fillings.


Mushroom Empanadas

Dough:

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour

  • 6 tablespoons butter, cubed

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • 1/2 to 3/4 cup hot water

  • Oil for frying

Method:

  1. In a bowl, sift the flour and add the cubes of butter.

  2. Work the butter into the flour until the mixture resembles wet sand.

  3. In a separate bowl, place the hot water and mix in the salt. Add the water mixture to the flour mixture.

  4. Work the dough until it is smooth. Wrap plastic and allow the dough to rest for 30 minutes.

  5. When ready to use, pick off a golf size amount of dough and roll it out into a circle that measures 6 inches in diameter.

  6. Add 1 tablespoon or 1 1/2 tablespoon of filling (see recipes below) to half of the circle.

  7. Fold the other half of the dough over the filling. Press the edges together, and using a fork, crimp the edges. Alternatively, hold the empanada in one hand, pinch out a 1/2- inch section of dough on one end, flatten it, then with your thumb, curl it towards the center of the dough. Continue with this method, until the entire edge is complete.

  8. Once all the filling is used up, heat about 2 inches of oil in a frying pan.

  9. Add the empanadas and fry until golden brown. Approximately 2-3 minutes on each side.

  10. Remove and set over a paper towel to drain.

  11. Serve warm.

Yields: serving for 8

Prep Time: 1 hour

Cook Time: 6 minutes





Mushroom Filling:


Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoons olive oil

  • 8 ounces Baby Bella mushrooms, diced

  • 1/2 onion, diced

  • 1 clove garlic, minced

  • 1 teaspoon black pepper

  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves

  • 1/4 cup almonds, chopped

  • 4 teaspoons apple cider vinegar

  • 1/4 cup tomato paste

  • 1/4 cup raisins

  • 1 teaspoon salt

Method:

  1. In a saucepan, heat the olive oil. Add the onions with the garlic until translucent.

  2. Add the mushrooms and cook for 5 minutes on medium heat.

  3. Add the black pepper, cinnamon and cloves.

  4. Cook for 2 minutes, then add the vinegar and salt.

  5. Add the raisins and the tomato puree and cook until it comes together in a thick sauce, about 6 minutes.

  6. Finally, add the almonds and cook for 2 more minutes.

  7. Remove from the heat and place in a bowl to cool. Once cooled, use to fill the dough.

Squash Filling:


Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

  • 1 cup acorn squash, peeled, cubed and deseeded

  • 1 onion, chopped

  • 1 clove garlic, minced

  • 1/4 cup tomato paste

  • 1 teaspoon black pepper

  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves

  • 1/2 cup black olives, diced (optional)

  • 4 teaspoons apple cider vinegar

  • 1/4 cup almonds, chopped

  • 1 teaspoon salt

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.

  2. Peel, halve and deseed and chop the squash into 1-inch cubes, then brush with olive oil and place on a baking sheet and roast for 30 minutes, until tender.

  3. When ready, remove from the oven and set aside.

  4. In a saucepan, cook the onions with the garlic until translucent, about 8 minutes. Add the squash and cook for approximately 5 minutes.

  5. Add the black pepper, cinnamon and cloves and stir fry until fragrant, one or two minutes. Add the olives and the vinegar.

  6. Cook for a few minutes, then add the salt and almond. Cook for 2-3 minutes.

  7. Remove from heat and place in a bowl to cool.

  8. Once cooled, use to fill the dough.

Squash Empanadas

Chicken Filling:

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

  • 1 small onion, chopped

  • 1 clove garlic, minced

  • 1 lb. chicken breast, cooked and cut into cubes

  • 1/2 cup chicken broth

  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves

  • 1/4 cup raisins

  • 1/4 cup almonds, chopped

  • 4 teaspoons apple cider vinegar

  • 1 teaspoon salt

Method:

  1. In a saucepan, cook the onions with the garlic until translucent.

  2. Add the chicken and cook for 5 minutes, until reheated.

  3. Add the spices, followed by the raisins and the chicken broth.

  4. Cook 5 minutes more on medium heat.

  5. Add the vinegar, salt and the almonds.

  6. Cook a few more minutes, until all the liquid has evaporated, then remove from heat and set aside to cool.

  7. Once cooled, use to fill the dough.


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