Empanadas are one of those dishes that can inspire endless versions. Anything you can imagine or desire can go inside that pastry purse, pop in the oven and in no time at all you'll have an amazing snack, appetizer, or meal. You can put pork or ground beef or no meat at all. Any type of vegetables. Or if you want it sweet, make the inside an orgy of melted nutella or a mini apple pie version. Savory? Put some ground turkey, potatoes and raisins.
Chicken and Spicy Cheddar Empanadas
Yields approximately 18-20 medium empanadas.
1/ 1/2- 2 cups diced cooked chicken
1 cup shredded sharp cheddar
4 oz. sliced pimientos, drained
8 oz. cheddar flavored jalapeño cream cheese
4 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tbsp salt
1 cup cold, unsalted butter (2 sticks)
1 1/4 cup ice water
1 lightly beaten egg
1. Mix all the ingredients for the filling well. Set aside.
2. Preheat the over to 400 degrees.
3. In another bowl, mix the flour, salt and baking powder.
4. Add cold, unsalted butter to the flour mixture until texture is coarse and only pea-sized pieces of butter remain.
5. Mix in 1 cup of ice cold water until the dough is crumbly and just come together. Add more water if too dry.
6. Turn dough onto a floured surface and knead together. Roll out with a rolling pin until approximately 1/4 inch thick.
7. Cut 4-inch circles of dough and flatten each with a rolling pin.
8. On each flattened circle, place a tbsp of filling in the middle, just below the center line.
9. Brush the edges of the lower half with some beaten egg.
10.Fold the top half over the bottom half, then press edges together with fingers. Crimp the edges with fork tines. Prick a small haole to let steam escape during baking.
11. Place the empanadas of a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or silicone mat.
12. Brush the tops of the surface with beaten egg.
13. Bake for 20 minutes.