We love mission conference at our church! It is our favorite event of the year. Our church has done different things through the years. One of our favorite things is the “international dinner”. This is where different people from our church bring in food that is “traditional” in other countries. In our church, we have some Jamaican ladies. They have made traditional Jamaican food before that was wonderful! We also have a missionary family to Cambodia. When they were with us, we had traditional Cambodian food (along with the tacos, rice, etc. that other folks in the church brought).
With this in mind, we wanted to give you a recipe for Argentine empanadas. Empanadas are an Argentine staple. If you are not familiar with empanadas, they are savory pastry pockets (think “hot-pocket” but that actually tastes good and fresh). There are many different ways they are made (some are baked, some fried, some have beef, some ham, some chicken, some just cheese, etc.). Each province makes them a little different as well. Here is an example recipe that you can make for your church’s international dinner….
- 4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup softened butter
- 1/2 cup warm water
- pinch of salt
1. Put all the flour into a big mixing bowl and form a crater in the center. In a separate container, mix warm water with the butter and salt. Pour the liquid mix into the center of the crater.
2. Mix well, then knead until uniform. Allow the dough to rest for at least 20 minutes in the refrigerator. If you have the time, let it rest overnight.
3. Flour your counter/table surface, then roll the dough a bit thicker than 1/4 inch. Cut circles about the size of your hand from the dough. Now you’re ready to fill the empanadas!
Beef Empanada Filling:
- 1 pound of ground beef
- 2 yellow onions
- 1 1/2 teaspoon paprika
- 1 pinch cumin
- salt and pepper to taste
- vegetable oil
- 2 eggs
1. Finely dice the onions while allowing enough oil to cover the onions heat in a medium to large saucepan. When the oil is hot, add the onions and allow to saute until they are clear in color.
2. Add the meat and spices, and cook, stirring frequently. Once the meat is cooked, remove the mixture from the heat.
3. Hard-boil two eggs. Once the eggs are ready, slice them and add to the meat mixture.
- Pre-heat the oven to a medium temperature. In the center of each disc, add a heaping spoonful of filling, being sure to leave a generous margin. Then fold the circle in half.
- The hardest part can be folding the empanadas; if the sides don’t stick together, wet your finger with a touch of water and fully seal the edges. Then, pinch a piece of the rim and fold it in towards the center. Here is a video I found on YouTube.
- If you like, you can brush the empanadas with a mix of equal parts egg yolk and water, and sprinkling the tops with sugar or parmesan cheese.
- Once the empanadas are all prepared, into the oven! Let them cook until slightly browned, about 15 to 20 minutes. Allow to cool and enjoy!