Natchitoches Meat Pies
- Vegetable oil, for frying
- 1 teaspoon vegetable oil
- 1 pound ground round beef
- 1/2 pound ground pork
- 1 cup chopped onion
- 1/4 cup chopped green onions
- 1/2 cup chopped green peppers
- 1/2 cup chopped celery
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon Essence, recipe follows
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne
- 2 tablespoons chopped garlic
- 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour plus 3 cups
- 1 cup beef stock
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 6 tablespoons vegetable shortening
- 1 egg
- 3/4 cup milk
Pour oil into a large stockpot or fryer to a depth of 4 to 5 inches. Preheat oil to 370 degrees F.
Heat a large saute pan, over medium-high heat and add 1 teaspoon of vegetable oil. When the oil is hot, add the beef and pork and cook, stirring, for 5 minutes or until there is no pink left in the meat. Add the onions, peppers, celery, salt, pepper, Essence and cayenne. Stirring often, cook the mixture until the vegetables are wilted, about 8 minutes. Add the garlic and cook 2 minutes longer. In a small bowl stir 1 tablespoon of flour into the beef stock until it dissolves, making a slurry. Add the slurry to the meat mixture. Bring mixture to a simmer, stirring until the mixture thickens slightly. Remove from the heat and cool completely.
In a mixing bowl, sift the remaining 3 cups flour, salt and baking powder together. Using a fork or a pastry blender, cut the shortening into flour mixture, until it resembles a coarse texture. In a small mixing bowl, beat the egg and the milk together. Work the egg mixture into the dry ingredients until you achieve a thick but workable dough.
Form the dough into a ball and cut into 24 equal pieces. Dusting each piece with a little flour, roll each piece into a 2 to 3-inch round. Place 2 tablespoonfuls of the meat mixture slightly off center. Fold it over to make the edges meet and crimp with a fork.
Place the meat pies in the hot oil and fry until golden brown, about 3 minutes. Remove the pies from the oil and drain on a paper-lined plate and season lightly with Essence. Serve immediately.Emeril's ESSENCE Creole Seasoning (also referred to as Bayou Blast):
2 1/2 tablespoons paprika
2 tablespoons salt
2 tablespoons garlic powder
1 tablespoon black pepper
1 tablespoon onion powder
1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon dried thyme
Combine all ingredients thoroughly.
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