Wednesday, September 15, 2010

To Do: Empanadas

The guest list for this weekend's southwestern-themed baby shower is higher than I expected. So instead of bowls of green chili, I want to make a ton of small empanadas.

Does anyone have expertise making empanadas? Any tips? Are they okay to make in advance and reheat?

I found step-by-step instructions (randomly from bloggers in my hometown!) that don't seem too complicated - even for a terrible pastry chef like myself.


MissScientistSF said...

We used to always make empanadas to take camping, they are great days later and reheat easily. Make lots of masa dough mix(add a little fat if you want them to taste extra good), don't over fill or fill with anything too goooey, and then you are set! Jealous, I'll have to make some soon.

Rachel said...

They are such perfect party food!

They taste great at room temp, so I don't even bother re-heating them. Totally fine to make them a day or two before and keep them refrigerated. I haven't tried re-heating, but I'm sure you could do it in the oven without any trouble (guessing the micro would make the pastry dough tough).

Empanada party pictures here ...

And recipe links at the bottom of this post ...

MrsEm said...

Yum! Thanks Rachel!

Amanda said...

I suggest just going to a latina tienda and get the pre-made empanada shells - like Casa Lucas in the mission. They are already cut and then you dont have to worry about the dough. So then all that you have to do is make the fillings, rub some water around the rim, pinch shut, and bake. Learned this from my homegirl who makes her mom's posole and amazing emapanadas for tons of people during the holidays.

Rachel you just made me SO hungry.

Anonymous said...

My mother is from Argentina, and thus empanada-making is quite common in my family. Here are my tips:

I second the idea of buying pre-made empanada shells (also known as tapas, or lids) from a specialty market. They are foolproof (and nobody in Buenos Aires would make their own, so it's perfectly authentic).

Some great fillings are:
Ham and cheese (simple and delicious);

Ground beef sauteed with onions and a good amount of cumin, then added to chopped hard-boiled egg and chopped green olives (a basic, and favorite);

Flaked tuna, chopped hard-boiled egg, capers, and a splash of lemon juice;

Cooked (or frozen-defrosted) spinach, a bit of parmesan or ricotta, mixed with an egg to bind.

Center your filling on half of the round of dough (don't overfill!). Dip your finger in water, and run it around the edges of the pastry. Then, fold the other half over the top, press the edges together, and crimp. If you'd like, you can brush the tops with an egg wash, and then bake until golden brown.

In Argentina, empanadas with different fillings are usually crimped differently so that the fillings can be told apart. An order of empanadas from a restaurant would usually come with a little "key" that has an illustration of each fold along with a description of the filling. This might be a cute idea for your party!

Hope this helps.