16 August 2012

Empanadas {In the Kitchen}

*UPDATE - as you can see, the pic's have become lost on this old post. For a more detailed version of this recipe, see my most current Empanada recipe here Crispy Beef Empanadas! Thanks, guys!!!

The garden is spent & kids are back in school.  It's the wane of summer.  The days slowly shorten, and we begin to long for heartier meals as our bodies store fat in preparation for the winter's meager food supply...

Okay, when in the period of evolution will that one go away?  I mean, we have had a year round food supply for many, many decades now.  You'd think our bodies would realize there's no need for this survival mechanism any longer.  I don't know about your evolutionary progression of the starvation factor, but mine is very much alive.

With that said,  I've had a real craving for empanadas lately.  Empanadas are a wonderfully tasty latin street food that can be made with a variety of fillings from meat to sweet.  I tried to ignore its calling, but when a craving calls me for more than a couple of weeks I feel it's somehow justified.  {I can always tell the fall season is sneaking up when my cravings turn from salads & fresh vege's to "heartier" entrees.}

I'm sure there are some amazing variations for empanadas using fresh ingredients, but with items such as this which I only make every few years or so, sometimes it's just easy to follow the recipe on the back of a box.  However, if you have a fresh version you'd like to share, please email me or send me a link.  I'd love to give it a try.

For this one, I simply use Goya brand's version with a few slight tweaks.  It's very tasty.  You can find their recipe here:  Empanadas

ingredients for empanadas via homeologymodernvintage.comThe prep time is quick & easy.ingredients for empanadas via homeologymodernvintage.com
 While browning the beef & onions, I prep the other ingredients.empanadas via homeologymodernvintage.comGoya's recipe calls for rolling out the dough an additional 1/2" in size.  I don't bother since the filling fits inside perfectly as it is.  Goya also calls for 1T of filling per pastry.  I prefer to use a scant 2T.empanadas via homeologymodernvintage.com
After I place the filling inside, I gently fold over the pastry so that the ends meet.  Lightly seal the ends with your fingers just to keep the filling from leaking.empanadas via homeologymodernvintage.comThen use a fork to further seal up the pocket prior to cooking.

To cook, Goya's recipe calls for deep frying.  This is how I've always made them.  However, you can also bake them @ 375 for 15-20 minutes until golden brown.empanadas via homeologymodernvintage.com
My empanadas went directly into the freezer.  Once firm, I will seal them in a freezer bag & pull them out as needed.  If you choose to freeze some of your empanadas, be sure to let them thaw completely before cooking.

A good side dish is fresh corn off the cobb & diced green pepper, lightly sauteed with butter, salt & pepper and a good Spanish rice or rice & beans.  Sometimes I also serve a little of the Sofrito sauce along with some fresh chopped jalepenos for dipping.  Yum!


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