Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Chilean Meat Pies...Going Down Memory Lane...

also known as Empanadas

The first time I went to England, the second leg of my journey was to Devon where I stayed in Exeter with my cousins. Being a unniversity city, and my cousins also having unni boarders staying with them, I met a lot of people from different countries. One girl was from Chile and gave me a Chilean Pie to try. I loved it! Filled with meat and spices and eggs and olives. For years I tried to recreate that exact pie to no avail. Then along came the internet and I was able to find several recipes which I combined for this past Sunday`s supper to make what I remember as the exact pie I had in Exeter. Although I think her`s was a little hotter, next time I`d add some hot peppers into the mix. I served these with thick slices of tomatoes on the side.

Servings: 8-10 large empanadas

Put in a large bowl

3 cups unbleached flour
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
Mix with a fork until combined.

Then add:

10 tablespoons (1 1/4 sticks) cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1/2 cup vegetable shortening, cut into small pieces
Cut the butter add shortening into the flour mixture using a pastry blender or pulse in a food processor until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.(I used a fork and my hands because I broke my food processor blade and don`t have a pastry thing-a-ma-jig) If using the food processor, transfer the mixture to a large bowl. Then, drizzle over the top:

11-14 tablespoons ice water
Mix gently with a fork until the flour mixture is dampened enough to gather into a ball. Shape into a flat disk, wrap tightly in plastic and refrigerate for at least 45 min.

Ingredients for the filling: Heat in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat:

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 medium onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
Cook, stirring, until the onion is translucent, about 5 minutes. Then, stir in:

1 pound lean ground beef
Cook until the beef is browned. Then, stir in:

1 tablespoon Adobo Seasoning (recipe below)

1/4 cup coarsely chopped pitted green olives
4 chopped hard cooked eggs
cook stirring constantly to evaporate any pan juices. Remove from the heat and let cool completely.
Pre-heat the oven to 350 F.

To Shape Empanadas:
Roll out the dough 1/8 inch thick on a lightly floured surface. Make sure that is thin, it makes for a better empanadas. Cut 6 inch rounds from the dough (you'll have to re-roll the scraps to get the 10-12 rounds). Spoon about 1/4 cup of the filling onto each round. Moisten the edges of the rounds with water, brings sides up together and press the edges together to completely enclose the filling. Place 2 inches apart on a baking sheet. Brush the following mixture over the tops of the pies:

1 egg, lightly beaten
1 tablespoon milk
Pinch of salt

Adobo Seasoning
(makes 1/2 c.)

3 Tbsp. Salt
1 Tbsp. Onion power
1 Tbsp. Garlic powder
1 Tbsp. Black pepper
1/2 tsp. Oregano
1/2 tsp. Chili powder
1/2 tsp. Cumin.....* (I used only 1/4 tsp because I think it smells like stinky feet)
1/2 tsp. Cayenne pepper
Combine all and mix well. Store in an airtight shaker container or plastic bag.


PG said...

mmmm...do you know, they are shaped exactly like Cornish pasties! But more exciting fillings. The big crust on a Cornish pasty was for this reason; on 'olden days' Cornish lead miner's wives would make a big pasty for their men's lunches, savory filling at one end, sweet at the other. The crust was for the miner's to hold as they ate, their hadns being dirty from mining and the crusts would be thrown away. Each pasty wold have the miner's initials on it, in pastry. But I like this recipe - olives and eggs, heavenly!

Ellee said...

These look excellent, exactly like our Cornish pasties, as pg commented. I didn't know the background about the minder's initials.

pussman said...

Thank you for all the recepies, I really want to try them.

LADY LUXIE said...


Empanada is a local delicacy in my country....has been for centuries..we have a lot of versions of it...

Adobo is a staple viand..I cook it at least once every two weeks...

interesting :>

CJ said...

Long ago, in LA, my mom had a Mexican lady who used to look after us and she would make these as a treat sometimes...I had forgotten all about them but your post brought the memories flooding back;) Very yummy! I'm giving these a go soon! Working right now so not around as much as I'd like to be but love your garden, it looks so cottagey (that doesn't look right, lol)!

carolyn said...

I sometimes make a Russian Pie a bit like this I tell everyone it's just a Cornish Pasty with eggs. Anyway maut try this.

Kahshe Cottager said...

Love empanadas! I haven't had them for a while and now I have a hankering for them!

Kilroy_60 said...

Well, well, well...

Between these and the oven baked doughnuts it will be an interesting dining experience this weekend.

I'll be back to visit you soon; surf a bit and write some comments. The thing about the experiment that I think will be great is reconnecting with my friends.

Speaking of which, I'd like to invite you to the Friends of Kilroy Carnival coming at the beginning of the month. What would it be without friends of Kilroy?

Until next time...cheers!

Blue the Spa Girl said...

Yummo! I know a woman from Pakistan who makes a similar one. She uses the wonton wrappers for the pastry though. She serves them with tea. It is delicious!
I am going to try your recipe, but I will cheat and use store bought pastry.

QUASAR9 said...

Not much of a pastry chef
But would love to pop over
and try some with tea & margaritas

Sandy said...

Great sounding recipe.. yum... sandy

Rauf said...

this reminds me of a movie 'Simply Irresistible ' staring Sarah Michelle Geller

what you do is magic T&M

tash said...

You know I was just about to mention Cornish pasties, though they have Devon pasties too (a little tussle between the two counties, along with which order clotted cream and jam should be applied to a scone...)!

I've got a book on Incan, Mayan and Aztec cookery which has these - they look delicious, I'll definitely have a go at making them!

~~ Melissa said...

I scrolled down and saw the donuts in a previous post. Now I can think of nothing else. Start the timer: how long until the desire overtakes me? :-)

mrsnesbitt said...

I'm very hungry now! LOL!


Rosa said...

Oh yummy! Can you pass one through the screen? Almost supper time here!!