Beef Picadillo Empanadas

Dig into one of Michael's bad-boy empanadas.

Yield:
Makes 8 to 10 large or 14 to 16 small empanadas
Ingredients
  • Empanada Dough:
  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 4 ounces (1 stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup ice water
  • 1 tablespoon distilled white vinegar
  • Beef Picadillo:
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 small white onion, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 2 to 4 tablespoons pureed canned chipotle
  • 1 teaspoon adobo seasoning
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Vegetable oil, for deep-frying (optional)
  • All-purpose flour, for assembly
  • 1 to 2 large egg whites, beaten, for assembly
Directions
  • 1. For the empanada dough: Sift the flour and salt into a large bowl. Cut in the butter using a pastry blender or your fingers until it resembles coarse meal with some pea-size pieces.

  • 2. Mix the egg, water, and vinegar in small bowl. Use a fork to stir the wet ingredients into the dry, until just incorporated and shaggy. Turn the mixture onto a lightly floured surface, gather it together, and then knead just until the dough comes together. Form into a flat disk, wrap in plastic wrap, and chill for at least 1 hour.

  • 3. For the picadillo: Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Saute the onion and garlic until browned, about 7 minutes. Turn the heat to medium-high, add the beef, and cook thoroughly, breaking it up with a wooden spoon, about 10 minutes. Stir in the tomato paste, chipotle puree, adobo, and salt and pepper to taste. Cool before assembling the empanadas.

  • 4. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F, or heat oil in a heavy pot to 350 degrees F. Lightly flour a cutting board and roll the cold dough into a circle about J inch thick. Cut the dough into 7- to 8-inch disks. Paint half of 1 disk with some egg white. Place a scant 1/4 cup picadillo in the center and fold the dough over to form a half-circle. Crimp the edges closed with a fork. Repeat with the remaining dough and filling. Paint the tops of the empanadas with egg white. (Or make mini empanadas with 4- to 41/2-inch circles and J cup of the filling. Adjust the cooking time accordingly.) Bake the empanadas on rimmed baking sheets until golden brown, about 45 minutes, or deep-fry for 3 minutes. Serve.


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    Recipe courtesy of Daphne Brogdon