The fun and family part of the day will be chronicled in another post. This one is all about the food.
Specifically, Chicken Empanadas.
It was 'assemble and bake' day.
The only ingredients the filling lacked were the chopped olives and hard boiled eggs. I know, they may seem like weird (or gross, as my mom would say) ingredients, but they really are essential to balancing the flavor and texture of the filling.
Who said food can't be fun?!?!?
After stirring those two items in it was time to assemble the empanadas. I had no idea what I was doing, but I sure had fun doing it!
Step 1: Place a couple of tablespoons of the filling on each disc of dough
Step 2: Moisten the edges with water and seal them tightly. Then moisten the edges with water one more time. They look like 'blobby jellyfish' at this point.
Step 3: 'Braid' the edges by folding and pinching... or something like that. I can't explain it, I just did it. Right before putting the pan in the 425 degree oven, brush them with an egg wash.
Who knew 20 minutes could feel like an eternity?
I started to get a little anxious and needed to find something to keep me occupied so I looked up a recipe for Dulce de Leche and worked on that for awhile.
Not like it was really tough (open a can of sweetened condensed milk, put it in a pie dish, cover tightly with foil and put it in a bain marie for an hour and a half), but still, it kept me busy.
I also made an apple filling to go with the Dulce de Leche for some dessert empanadas.
Okay, so maybe I was more than a little anxious.
Finally the timer rang ...
The finished product (photo by R)
I squealed with delight as I pulled them from the oven for several reasons:
1) They smelled heavenly2) They looked delicious3) They had not exploded, as I had feared they would
R came in to see what the noise was all about and after the confusion was cleared up, he bravely volunteered to taste-test. What a guy.
The empanadas got rave reviews from both of us. Definitely a hit!
Only problem - tons of leftover filling and no more empanada dough. Easily remedied with a quick stop by Fiesta this afternoon. We now have 9 more empanadas hanging out in our fridge.
Dulce de Leche's flavor was great, even though I just should have let it go a little longer. It's a bit runnier than I wanted it to be, but I ran out of patience. I put a little of it in with the apple filling and some mozzerella cheese to make the dessert empanadas. They were pretty fab too!
And the 'runniness' of the dulce de leche certainly didn't stop me from eating it again tonight for dessert.
This time I drizzled it over my Blue Bell Homemade Vanilla. Mmmmm.