Empanadas and a few sides

Posted on August 28, 2012

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Last year for my birthday I literally got everything I wanted. It was insane. Who knew if you put together a very specific list and sent it out into the wild world of the web, you could receive said items before, on, or just after your birthday!

Where am I going with this, you might ask? Well, not only is it almost my birthday again and I’m trying to figure out what cast iron cooking implements one should really ask for (if you know, please tell me! Size, brand,ecc!) but I have been using my iPad I got last year for my birthday pretty much exclusively as a cookbook. I play an occasional game, here or there, but really, don’t have the attention span for most games. Instead I bought a rugged cover that has a stand built into it and I plop it up on the counter and voila! Cookbook, and cookbook stand in one. I’m cheap, when it comes to buying myself stuff, but I recently splurged (as I do…) and got some cookbooks on amazon for my kindle app.

One of them is The Homesick Texan. Awesome cookbook, and though I really do like flipping through pages of a book to find recipes, I can’t justify clogging the house up with a million magazines or cookbooks.

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I made some empanadas according loosely based on her empanada recipe, because, I went shopping for the FOURTH time and still managed to forget to buy garlic, really? Really! Ridiculous. It’s like I get hit by a mind eraser as soon as I walk in the doors of a grocery store, I literally was thinking non-stop about garlic right up until I was actually shopping. So, I tried my best with what I already had on the shelves at home and they ended up being totally edible, and pretty tasty, if I may say so myself…

I used to be totally fascinated by empanadas, and eat MILLIONS of them if I went to my friend’s house and their mum made some, unstoppable once I started eating them. I never bothered asking how they were made, I just dreamt of a day that I too could have empanadas whenever I wanted. That day has finally arrived. And… now that I know what the dough/crust is made with… I kind of wish I hadn’t eaten quite so many of them as a kid… or maybe it just explains things a little easier. Empanada 15, not Freshman.

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Empanadas
adapted from Homesick Texan’s cookbook
(makes enough for 4 people, with sides)

Crust:
8 oz cream cheese, room temp
1 stick unsalted butter, room temp
1-1/2 cup flour
1/4 (?) teaspoon salt

mix all together, wrap in plastic, place in fridge for at least 30 mins
when ready to use, roll out (on floured surface) til about 1/8″ thick

filling:
chorizo (I used two portuguese style sausages, a little less than a pound) casing removed, as much as I had patience for, chopped up in small pieces after I found removing the casing was a fruitless task
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder (since I had no fresh garlic, and forgot I’d frozen garlic scapes… dammit!)
1 jalepeno seeded, and diced
1/2 cup fresh grated montery jack cheese
a couple tablespoons of fresh parsley (because I had not cilantro…)
1/8 teaspoon (?) cumin
salt and pepper (fresh grated) to taste

cook chorizo in a little bit of vegetable oil, drain excess grease after chorizo is fully cooked. turn to low, add rest of ingredients, spoon into pieces of dough (circles roughly 5″ in size – I used a salad bowl to cut the pieces of dough, I’m sure there is a more advanced way of doing this, but it was what I had…) don’t overfill, pinch to close, or use the fork and press on the sides. wash with egg/milk wash and then bake at 375 for about 25 minutes or until golden.

I got some awesome jalepenos from my CSA share this week. Not until I scooped the very last bit out of the pan and stuffed in it my mouth did I really taste an overwhelming amount of ‘penos, but it was crisp as I cut it, and was a great addition to the minimal filling I made – given my dinner companion doesn’t olives, this was a super plain version of what could’ve been crazily intense had I shopped properly…

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