I was eighteen before I ate my first burrito. This fact is a little shocking considering I now live in a state known for its amazing Mexico food. The proof is in the pudding: take a look at this Map of State Foods, for example. (Yay for fish tacos, California)!
Regardless, over the past eleven years or so, I’ve grown familiar with the cuisine that once seemed so foreign to me. And with Cinco De Mayo just around the corner and my love of celebrating anything mid-week, I’m planning on making these Lamb Empanadas. Since these are baked opposed to fried, they’re not as heavy as your typical empanadas. You could also make the filling and dough the day before and assemble them just before baking if you’re planning on having quite a few people over for dinner.
If the thought of making these empanadas seems too laborious (it’s worth it, I promise), you could make these Lamb and Mango Tostadas instead.
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- sprinkle of salt
- 1 stick unsalted butter, cold
- 1 egg
- 3/4 cup ice water
- ½ lb. ground lamb
- ½ onion, diced
- 2 garlic cloves - diced
- 3 teaspoons chili powder
- 2 teaspoons cumin
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- ½ can black beans, rinsed & drained
- 2 green onions, thinly sliced
- 2 tablespoons cilantro
- salt and pepper
- 1 egg, whisked, for egg wash
- To make the dough, add flour and salt to a large bowl and rub in the butter until mixture resembles course bread crumbs.
- Whisk egg with ice water and pour into flour mixture to form a soft dough. Chill at least 30 minutes.*
- To make the filling, add the ground lamb and onion to a large frying pan, and cook until lightly browned.
- Add garlic and spices and cook for a few minutes until fragrant.
- Add beans, green onions, cilantro, and season with salt and pepper.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
- Roll pastry out to about 1/8" thick and cut out circles about 3" diameter.
- Spoon tablespoon of mixture in the middle and fold over, pressing or crimping edges together.
- Arrange empanadas on a lightly greased baking sheet, brush with egg wash, and bake for about 20 minutes until deep golden brown.
- Serve with hot sauce and sour cream
- *Filling and dough can be made up to 2 days ahead.