Traditional Argentinean pastries from Mendoza, Cuyo region, to accompany a good Malbec!
My mum´s recipe, it makes about 36 Empanadas
for the filling:
500g mince beef
1250g white onions
50ml vegetable oil
black pepper, ground
paprika, ground (pimentón dulce)
3 eggs, hard boiled and sliced
green olives, pitted
for the dough:
600g plain flour (all purpose)
150g butter, soft
250ml cold water
20g butter, melted
flour to work with
2 egg yolks
Cut the onions transversally.
Separate the onion rings.
Bring a medium size pan to a moderate heat.
Add the butter and oil.
When the butter is melted, add the onion rings.
Cook until soft.
Add the mince beef and mix with the onions.
Cook until meat gets brown.
Season with salt, black pepper, and abundant oregano, cumin and paprika.
Remove from heat and leave it to cool down.
In a bowl, place the flour and the soft butter.
Add some water, approx. 200ml until obtaining a dough.
Knead the dough for few minutes until homogeneous and leave it to rest in the fridge for 30’-60’ covered in cling film.
Preheat oven to 200ºC.
With a rolling pin flatten the dough to obtain an approx. 30x15cm shape.
To make a very basic puff pastry, divide “in your head” the length of the rectangle in three parts. Brush some melted butter on the first third of the flatten dough.
Fold the other two thirds on top and brush more melted butter on top of the second third.
Fold the last third on top.
Brush more butter on top and fold again.
Repeat this step.
Take to the fridge for about 30’.
Separate about half of the dough and roll it out until obtaining a not-too-thin flat dough.
Use a cutter (or cup) to cut disks of about 12cm diameter.
Half or slice the pitted olives, cut the egg slices by half, and put some 50 ml water in a small bowl.
Place about a teaspoon of filling in a disk, add some egg and olive pieces.
Add some water with your fingers in half the border of the disk to help sealing.
Fold the other half of the border over to form a half-moon shaped empanada.
Press the borders firmly.
To make the "repulgue", pinch and twist the edges of the empanada...
... bit by bit until reaching the other end.
Place the empanada on a floured baking tray.
Repeat with the rest of the dough.
Brush the empanadas with the whisked egg yolks.
Bake until golden brown.
Serve the empanadas straight from the oven, keeping them hot.
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