12/11/10

Empanadas - Chicken and Green Olive

My oldest daughter has spent the last 5 years watching me take photos of our food and keep track of recipes for my website. I guess it's only natural she took a cue from me and started to take photos of meals on her travels. She went to London when she was 16 and was determined to avoid all the fast food and 'typical' tourist stops in order to try real English foods. She returned home with photos of her meals and descriptions of what it was, what it tasted like and the pub or restaurant she ate it in. This has continued through her other travels and last summer when she returned home from a Mission Trip she was raving about the empanadas she enjoyed.

Made with fillings such as beef and olives, ham, spinach and cheese or chicken, I gathered many different versions at the time to add to my files. This one sounded good to me because it used chicken and green olives... I love green olives! It's not like the ones she had on her trip, but the saltiness of olives always gets my attention.

Empanadas

FOR THE PASTRY:

11oz flour
Pinch baking powder
6oz butter, melted
2 eggs, beaten

FOR THE FILLING:

1 T olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, crushed
1 red pepper, finely chopped
1 T tomato puree
1 t smoked paprika
1 t ground cumin
7oz cooked chicken breast, diced
8 stuffed green olives, chopped
Salt and freshly ground black pepper


Sift the flour, salt and baking powder into a large bowl. Stir in the butter and 1 of the eggs, then gradually stir in about 3-4 oz. warm water to make a soft dough. Wrap in plastic wrap and chill for 30 minutes.

To make the filling, heat the oil in a frying pan and add the onion. Cook for 3-5 minutes, until softened, then add the garlic and cook for a further minute. Add the red pepper and cook for 2-3 minutes until softened.

Stir in the tomato pure, paprika and cumin and mix well. Add the chicken and olives and season with salt and pepper. Simmer for 2-3 minutes, adding a splash of water if the mix gets too dry. Set aside to cool.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Roll out the pastry to a thickness of 1/8 inch and cut out circles approximately 5 inches in diameter. Divide the filling between the pastry circles and moisten the edges with water.

Fold the pastry over to enclose the filling and crimp the edges to seal. Transfer to a baking sheet and brush with milk to glaze. Bake for 10-15 minutes, until risen and golden.

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