WILD BLUBERRY & LAMB EMPANADAS
Adapted from a recipe by Felipe Rojas-Lombardi in THE ART OF SOUTH AMERICAN COOKING
For the lamb filling:
- 2 tablespoons raisins
- 3 tablespoons Rum
- 2 tablespoons cooking oil
- 3 garlic cloves finely chopped
- 1 cup chopped onion
- 1 jalapeno finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- ½ pound ground lamb
- ½ cup Wild Blueberry Dipping Sauce
- 3 tablespoons finely ground nuts (like pinenuts walnuts) or seeds (pumpkin, sunflower)
- 3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
For the empanada curry dough:
- 3 cups all purpose flour
- 2 teaspoon Sea salt
- 10 tablespoons butter
- 1 teaspoon curry powder
- 1 egg yolk
- ½ cup iced water
Sealer & glaze:
- 1 egg white
- 2 tablespoons cream milk or water
To prepare the curry dough:
- Add the dry ingredients to the bowl of your mixer or food processor.
- Pulse to blend.
- Add the butter to the dry ingredients, and pulse to combine.
- Separate the egg yolk from the egg white, reserving the egg white for the glaze.
- Add the egg yolk to the mixture and combine until mixture resembles a coarse meal.
- Add the iced water, a small amount at a time and combine until the dough forms a ball.
To prepare the lamb filling:
- Soak the raisins in the rum until plump, about 20 minutes.
- Heat the oil in a sauté pan. Add the garlic, onions, jalapeno and cumin, sautéing until the onion is soft and the mixture is fragrant.
- Stir in the ground lamb and continue cooking and stirring until the lamb is thoroughly cooked, about 10 minutes.
- Add the raisins with the rum and simmer until the rum has evaporated. Stir in the wild blueberry dipping sauce, groundnuts or seeds and chopped parsley.
To prepare the empanadas:
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
- Prepare the sealer and glaze by whisking the egg white with the liquid.
- On a well-floured surface, roll the curry dough into a 16-inch square, about 1/8 inch thick. Cut the dough into 16 squares.
- Brush the edges of each square with the sealer.
- Add about 1 ounce of filling to each square.
- Fold the dough over to form a triangle. Seal the edges and crimp with a fork.
- Repeat for the remaining squares of dough. Cut a slit in the top of each one and place on parchment paper on a sheet pan.
- Brush the tops on the empanadas with the egg glaze.
- Bake until golden brown, about 25 minutes.
- Let cool on a rack and serve warm.
Makes 16 empanadas. Chef Cheryl’s notes: These unbaked turnovers freeze well, brush with glaze when removing from the freezer. I used pumpkin seeds in the filling, ground hazelnuts would be delicious also. Nutritional analysis per empanada (approximate): 230 calories, 6 grams protein, 21 grams carbohydrates, 14 grams fat, 64 mg. sodium, 1 gram fiber.