Friday, September 10, 2010

Colombian Empanadas "Empanadas Colombianas"

By Erica from My Columbian Recipes & International Flavors

Erica The Colombian Foodie
These empanadas are a popular snack in Colombia and are served by most Colombian restaurants in the USA. Traditionally, these delicious fritters are made with shredded pork and beef, but in my family we always make them with ground meat. Serve them with ají and lime wedges on the side.

In Colombia, empanadas are also sold outside of the churches. They are usually small and just have potato filling, a great alternative for vegetarians and absolutely delicious. For the vegetarian version of this empanadas recipe, follow all the directions just omitting the beef and pork.

Ingredients

Servings: Approximately twenty, 3 inch empanadas
Vegetable oil for frying
Lime and ají for serving
Dough or Masa
1 ½ cups precooked yellow cornmeal (masarepa)
2 cups water
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
½ tablespoon sazon Goya with azafran
½ teaspoon Salt

Filling

2 cups peeled and diced white potatoes
1 chicken or vegetable bouillon tablet
1 tablespoon olive oil
¼ cup chopped white onions
1 cup chopped tomato
½ teaspoon salt
¼ cup chopped green onions
1 chopped garlic clove
2 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro
2 tablespoon chopped red bell pepper
¼ teaspoon black pepper
½ pound ground pork and beef

Directions to prepare the dough:

1. Place the masarepa in a large bowl. (Masarepa: is precooked corn flour used to make Colombian arepas, empanadas and tamales. One of the brands available in the United States is GOYA available in most supermarkets) Goya, Flour White Masarepa, 24-Ounce (12 Pack)  Add the sazon Goya and salt and stir to mix well. Add the water and oil and mix to form dough. Pat the dough into a ball and knead for 2 minutes or until smooth. Cover with plastic and set aside for 20 minutes.
Goya, Flour White Masarepa, 24-Ounce (12 Pack)

2. Meanwhile, to make the filling, cook the potatoes in a pot with water and the bouillon tablet for 20-25 minutes or until tender. Drain and gently mash the potatoes. Set aside.

3. Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large, heavy skillet. Add the onion and cook over medium-low heat stirring frequently, for 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes, green onions, garlic, bell pepper, cilantro, salt and black pepper. Cook for about 15 minutes.

4. Add the ground pork and beef. Cook, breaking up the meat with a wooden spoon, for 10 to 15 minutes or until the mixture is fairly dry.

5. Transfer the meat mixture to the mashed potatoes bowl and mix well to combine.

6. Break small portions of the dough, about 1 ½ tablespoons each one, and form each portion into a ball by rolling between the palms of your hands.

7. Place the balls of dough between two pieces of plastic and roll each out very thinly to form a circle. Remove the top plastic and place 1 tablespoon of the filling in the center of each.

8. Then using the plastic underneath, fold the dough over to enclose the filling, forming a half circle. Tightly seal the edges by crimping with the tines of a fork.

9. Fill a large pot with vegetable oil and heat over medium heat to 360° F.

10. Carefully place 3 or 4 empanadas at the time in the heated oil and fry for about 2 minutes until golden on all sides.

11. Using a slotted spoon transfer the empanadas to a plate lined with paper towels. Serve with ají and lime wedges on the side.

Secrets of Colombian Cooking (Hippocrene Cookbook Library)  El sabor de Colombia  Colombia (Enchantment of the World. Second Series)

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