Well, I have made empanadas the usual way using traditional flat pastry or puff pastry, but this time I thought to try using a spring roll dough in order to maximize the filling to carrier ratio.
Recently, I have become intrigued by the uses of a product called TYJ Spring Roll Wrappers. No this is not a commercial for the product – Menlo makes similar wrappers and I have some on hand to try next.
NOTE: These are NOT egg roll wrappers or rice paper wrappers!
These are exceedingly thin, very strong and resilient, wheat flour sheets which, after filling, can be oven-baked, fried or deep-fat fried. For oven-baking I have found that using an egg wash is the best way to achieve a golden-brown color. You can use oil, but the rolls feel and taste greasy.
Here are some pictures of my empanadas in spring rolls showing the
traditional roll fold, a log roll, a samosa fold, and a crab Rangoon-style fold.
The glossy appearance results from the egg wash, not from oil.
My Recipe for the Filling using Pork
|Cooking oil (olive, sesame, vegetable, avocado)||as needed|
|Minced or ground pork (I minced my own using a food processer)||28 oz|
|Celery – chopped||8 oz|
|Mixed frozen peppers (red, green, yellow) – chopped||8 oz|
|Frozen peas and carrots mix||8 oz|
|Medium size Onion – chopped||1|
|Medium size yellow potatoes – pre-boiled and chopped||2|
|Raisins – golden, plumped up in water for several hours or overnight||8 oz|
|Chicken broth||14 oz|
|Tomato paste||2 Tbsp|
|Garlic – fresh minced||2 Tbsp|
|Cumin – ground||2 Tbsp|
|Paprika – ground||1 Tbsp|
|Oregano – dried||1 Tbsp|
|Cayenne pepper – dried||½ tsp|
|White wine for de-glazing||1/3 cup|
|Olives – green, pitted or pimento stuffed – chopped (Optional)||2/3 cup|
- Brown the pork in a large pot and then add chicken broth to deglaze the pot and set aside.
- In a separate deep pan fry the onion and garlic (5 minutes), add the celery and pepper mix (5 minutes more), and then the potatoes (5 minutes more).
- Mix in the tomato paste, spices and sugar and then transfer to the large pot holding the browned pork. Use a little white wine to de-glaze the frying pan and add to large pot.
- The large pot with everything added will be quite liquid! Set the pot on medium-high heat and bring to a boil with stirring, then reduce heat to simmer uncovered for as long as it takes to reduce the liquid (1 – 2 hours or longer).
- Allow the mixture to cool completely before filling into pastry wraps. I leave mine overnight on the counter covered.
- When completely cooled, stir thoroughly to distribute any remaining moisture, and then start filling.
- Bake at 375 deg F for 30 – 35 minutes, turning over and washing underside at 20 – 25 minutes.
Note: The TYJ Spring Roll wrappers are very expensive on Amazon ($ 45.00) – I do not know why.
Find your local Asian market!