This was my first empanada making experience and it was a success. Mmmmmm-panadas! These are great for appetizers, for snacks… or even for dinner if you roll how I roll.
The filling is a mix of zucchini, corn, and black beans all stirred together with a sprinkling of spicy jalapeños and cheesy cheese… because … well, duh… cheese. That amazing combo of deliciousness is then folded into a tender (did I just use the word tender??? on my own blog??), flaky pastry crust and baked into a whole bunch (actually about 10) cute little mini pies. Everybody loves a mini pie. EVERYBODY loves a cute little mini pie.
You could totally eat these plain because there is enough going on with the filling to be satisfying all alone. Or you could get all fancy-pants and garnish with salsa, sour cream, and cilantro. Or you could just eat them straight out of the oven simultaneously enjoying the goodness and burning the living daylights out of your poor tongue. At least, I’m guessing that’s what would happen if one did such a thing. I wouldn’t know for sure.
Oh my gosh! I almost forgot to tell you the most magical part about this recipe. These are totally freezable! Insert cute little heart emoticon here. PS How do I make one of those cute little heart emoticons?
1 1/2C whole wheat flour
3/4C AP flour
1tsp kosher salt
1 stick unsalted cold butter, cubed
1/4C ice water
For the filling:
2 zucchini, diced
1C frozen corn, thawed
2T olive oil
3/4C canned black beans, rinsed and drained
1/2C sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
1/2C green onions, sliced thin
3T cilantro, chopped
2T diced canned green chiles
1/2tsp chili powder
Optional egg wash:
1 egg + 1T water, beaten
Combine flour and salt in a bowl. Cut in butter using pastry fork or fork.
Whisk together egg and water.
Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients. Mix with a fork until the dough just barely comes together. If you need it, add an additional tablespoon or water if needed. Place dough on floured surface. Knead a few times (like 5) until you have formed a ball. Wrap in plastic for at least 1 hour.
While the dough is chilling, make the filling. Preheat oven to 400. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Toss olive oil and zucchini in a bowl. Pour onto a baking sheet. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast for 20 minutes at 400 until softened and slightly browned.
Once zucchini is cooked, combine with black beans and corn. Stir. Allow zucchini to cool slightly. Then add cheese, green onions, cilantro, chiles, cumin, and chili powder. Taste and adjust seasonings if necessary.
Remove dough from the fridge. Roll to about 1/8″ thick on a lightly-floured surface. Cut into 6″ circles (or if you are really talented roll the dough into a 6″ circle). Place about 1/3C filling onto the center of the dough. Moisten the edge with egg wash. Fold over and seal edge. If you are fancy, use a fork to crimp the edge. Place onto a baking sheet that has been lined with parchment. Repeat with remaining dough.
Brush the tops of the empanadas with egg wash. Put a few small slits in the top of each empanada to allow the steam to realease while baking.
Cook for 22-25 minutes (until browned) at 400.
Serve with salsa, sour cream, cilantro, etc.
To freeze: You can bake, cool, and then freeze. Just place frozen empanadas on baking sheet. Bake at 400 until heated through, about 30 minutes. Reportedly, you can also freeze these unbaked, but I have yet to try.