Wednesday, April 20, 2011

An empanada (Filipino meat pie) recipe

It has been five years since I made empanada. I woke up today badly wanting to make one. It's one of the dishes that daunt me because of the seeming difficulty of making the dough and all the dicing and slicing involved.

But as you can see, today's food craving of making the empanada was a success! I wouldn't call this an everyday dish though as the whole process is kinda laborious. Consider it exercise rolling the dough and making the filling :D The crust recipe could use some improvement. I used the recipe by local chef Dorothy Ferreria which required no egg. Feel free to scout for other crust recipes.

Begin your empanada kitchen adventure by making the filling. The good thing with empanada is that you can be creative with your filling. Maybe you're a vegetarian or you want Nutella... it is all possible with this dish. Here I used the basic meat recipe. You will need -

2 tbsp. corn oil
1 tsp. minced garlic
1/2 cup chopped onions
1/3 cup chopped tomatoes
sliced celery stalk
1/2 cup diced red or green bell pepper
half a kilo of ground pork or beef
1/2 cup water
1/2 tsp. black pepper
a few dried basil leaves
1 piece bay leaf or laurel, crushed
1 tsp. rock salt
3 tbsp. tomato catsup
1/8 cup raisins...or more!

- Saute garlic, onions and tomatoes. Add the celery, bell pepper and ground meat. Wait until the meat is cooked and add the rest of the ingredients. Season,then simmer till done. Set aside and let cool.

Here's the filling when done. It's good to be your viand already:)

For the crust, you will need -

3 cups all-purpose flour
3tbps. granulated white sugar
1/2 cup cold butter, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1/2 cup water

Preheat oven to 400 F.

Prepare the crust. Combine the flour and sugar in a mixing bowl, then add butter. Cut the butter into the flour mixture until the butter is well distributed and resembles semi-dry sand.Pour in the water slowly and mix into a solid dough. Set aside for five minutes to relax the crust. Afterwards, roll ough dough again. Using a round cookie cutter or similar round-shaped object, form several thin circles. Put filling in the lower half of each rolled out crust. Brush edges with egg wash ( 1 egg mixed with a tablespoon of water) then fold. Press the edges together with a fork.

Put uncooked empanadas in a greased cookie sheet.. Prick the surface 3 times with a fork at half-inch intervals to allow steam to escape once the pies are in the oven. Bake at 400F for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, take out from the oven and brush the surface again with the egg wash. Return to the oven and bake again for 15 minutes or until golden brown and done.