Empanadas! They’re tasty little pouches that are good at almost any time of the day, and that’s exactly their appeal. And when those little pouches are filled with soft potato, tomato sauce, ground beef, and delicious spices they surely are tasty.
I’ve always wanted to learn how to make real Spanish style empanadas. Mr. Wishes and I went to dinner at a friends house earlier this year and we had these empanadas. Fortunately for me, our friend Melissa taught me how to make them so that I didn’t have to go without them for very long. They’re just too good! I’ve made them several times since then and finally got around to photographing them (patience is something I really need to work on when I’m starving.)
I love empanadas and these are the best I’ve had. All latin countries have different versions of empanadas with variations of dough and fillings. The contents of empanadas can be anything from fruit fillings for a dessert version to ground beef for a dinner meal. Some are fried and some are baked. Personally I love them either way, but they are terribly fattening when fried so I choose to bake mine instead. For the dough I used Goya brand discs from the frozen section in my supermarket but if you want to make yours from scratch, go right ahead! Goya products (the Sofrito I used is Goya, as well) are available in the international aisle of most grocery stores. The dough and the Sofrito are in the freezer section, under Goya, next to the vegetables in my grocery store.
Thanks for the recipe, Melissa, and for teaching me how to make real Puerto Rican empanadas! I will enjoy it for years to come.
*makes about 13-15 empanadas*
1 and 1/2 of the 14oz. packages of (10) frozen ORANGE Goya discs, defrosted (I use about 1 pack and a half for the amount of filling)
1 lb of ground beef
1 Tablespoon olive oil
Sazon con Asafron seasoning packet (Goya) (1 packet per 1 lb of beef)
3 Tablespoons of Sofrito (homemade or store bought – I used Goya frozen Sofrito)*
1 medium size baking potato, peeled and diced into 1/4 inch cubes
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 small can (8 oz) of tomato sauce (I used Hunt’s)
1 egg, beaten (to brush tops of empanadas with)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray baking sheet(s) with non-stick cooking spray.
Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat and saute the sofrito and minced garlic in the olive oil. Add ground beef and potatoes, stir and break up meat with a wooden spoon, cook until beef is cooked through and potatoes are soft. This takes about 10 minutes.
Add in the tomato sauce and the Sazon con Asafron seasoning packet to the skillet and stir. Lower heat to medium-low and simmer until mixture thickens a little, about another 10 minutes. Remove from heat.
On a lightly floured work surface, using a rolling pin, roll out the Goya wrappers until about 1/2-inch larger in diameter.
Stuff the Goya wrappers with about 2 heaping tablespoons (or a little more) of the filling. Moisten edges with water, fold in half to create a half moon and seal shells well by crimping with a fork (or use a dough press if you have one) so that they don’t separate while cooking. Repeat until all shells are completed.
Brush the tops of the empanadas with the egg wash before baking.
Bake at 350 for 40 minutes. Enjoy!
*In Spanish cuisine, Sofrito typically consists of cilantro, garlic, green olive, roasted red pepper, onion, and a little oil.