Empanadas are delicious! And, for Gf-zing! they are one of the holy grails of gluten free cooking – we seek to make a dough that will encase the meat filling and be dry but intriguing, and not quite like pie crust. We have found a way to do this by using the Breads from Anna mix (without the yeast), and the traditional white wine and olive oil that make the interesting and tasty-flavored crust. The recipe was developed by Gf-Zing! , which celebrates flavor in the gluten free world.
The many ingredients and spicy flavors of empanadas are delightful, and the empanadas can be carried like a sandwich, for lunch, backpacking or picnics. We find that our friends always want the recipe but are sometimes appalled by the list of ingredients – raisins, cheese, allspice, cayenne pepper, meat – it is a medieval list of ingredients, but SOOOOO good!
3 1/2 cups Breads From Anna mix (Soy and Rice free kind), but don’t include the yeast packet
1/2 Tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup milk
1/4 cup dry white wine
1/4 cup olive oil
Mix the dry ingredients in a bowl. You will have a little bread mix left in the bag, which you should save for the filling and rolling. In a second bowl, mix the milk, white wine, oil and egg, then add to the dry ingredients. Knead (yes, knead) the dough until it is like pie crust in texture. Cover the bowl until you are ready to fill the empanadas, as this dough dries out quickly. As you work with the dough, you may need to add extra white wine, a teaspoon at a time, if the dough starts to dry out.
Fry the following ingredients in a non-stick skillet, just until the meat is cooked:
1 Tablespoon olive oil
1/2 pound ground beef, chicken or gluten free turkey
1/2 of a green bell pepper, minced
2 Tablespoons garlic, minced
Then add and stir-fry briefly:
1/3 cup golden or brown raisins
1/4 cup chopped olives (green ones stuffed with pimientos, or black ones in brine but not oil-cured)
1 1/2 Tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 Tablespoon Breads from Anna mix (see dough, above)
1 3/4 teaspoons ground allspice
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
Take the pan off the heat, and add:
1 cup packed grated Jack or cheddar cheese
1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro (we wash it and snip with scissors)
The mixture will be damp but not soupy. Set aside.
To make the empanadas:
Preheat the oven to 350-375 degrees
Take a walnut sized piece of dough and squish it in your hands to compact it. Put a piece of waxed paper on the table, sprinkle with leftover Breads from Anna mix, and put the walnut-sized ball of dough there. Top with another sheet of waxed paper, then use a rolling pin to roll the ball of dough into a circle of 4″ diameter. Take off the top sheet of paper. (This method of rolling the dough yields very little mess to clean up!)
Place 1 Tablespoon of filling on the bottom half of the circle of dough, then fold the top half down to cover the filling, and squish the edges together to form a half-moon shaped turnover, completely encasing the filling. Place the filled empanada on a Silpat lined baking sheet. Repeat this process 23 more times or so – the recipe will make approximately 24 empanadas. Leave an inch between the empanadas, as they expand some while baking.
Once you have a sheet full of empanadas, bake them for 12-20 minutes. Take a look at them after 12 minutes, and let bake for additional time if needed. We prefer them slightly browned.
Serve warm, or put them in the refrigerator and use them for packing a lunch box or going backpacking.
Make sure all your ingredients, including the spices, are gluten free!