Friday 25 September 2015

If It’s Chilly, Try Chillis from Chile!


Last week I said I was going to make some Chilean Empañadas. I did, and I remembered to take a photo just before we finished eating them. But I forgot to post the recipe.

Spiced beef empanadas - Makes 12

prep time 20 mins [plus chilling] cooking time 20 mins

For the pastry

450g/1lb plain flour

2 tsp baking powder

1 tsp salt

60g/2¼oz butter, diced into 1cm/½in cubes

60g2¼oz lard, diced into 1cm/½in cubes

For the meat filling

2 tbsp olive oil

1 onion, finely chopped

1 green pepper, seeds removed, finely chopped

400g/14oz lean minced beef

1 tsp paprika

1 tsp chilli powder

30g/1oz raisins

12 green olives, pitted, roughly chopped

2 hard boiled eggs, chopped

1 tsp dried cumin

Pinch salt

1 beaten egg [for sealing/glazing]

Preparation method

Turn the oven to 200C/fan 180C/Gas 6 and line a large baking tray with baking parchment.

1. For the pastry, mix the flour, baking powder and salt in a bowl. Add the diced butter and lard and rub into the flour using your fingertips until the mixture has the texture of fine breadcrumbs. Add cold water

one teaspoon at a time, mixing between additions with a table knife,until the dough comes together into a soft dough (the dough will take anything between 3-6 tbsp water). Roll the dough into a ball and wrap well in cling film, leave to rest in the fridge for an hour.

2. For the meat filling, boil the eggs for 10 minutes, until hard boiled. Cool under running water, then peel and chop. Set to one side.

3. Heat the olive oil in a frying pan, add the onion and cook on a low heat until transparent and softened. Add the green pepper and minced beef and fry over a high heat until the meat has browned, then add the paprika and chilli powder. Remove the pan from the heat and add the raisins, olives, cumin and chopped eggs. Season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper.

4. To assemble the empanadas, remove the pastry from the fridge, and roll out to pound coin thickness (3mm). Cut circles from the pastry, using a saucer as a guide, or else use a 12cm/4½in pastry cutter.

5. Put two teaspoons of filling onto one half of each pastry circle. Wet the edges of the pastry with a little water, fold the non-filled half of the pastry over the filled half, and crimp the edges together to seal or use a fork to mark the edges. Repeat with the remaining pastry circles.

6. Put the empanadas on the baking tray and brush with beaten egg. Bake for 15–20 minutes, or until golden-brown.

recipe tips It's important not to overfill the empanadas. Try making these into mini versions and serve as canapés. P1020214

For true authenticity, these should be deep-fried and sprinkled with caster sugar, but I am trying to cut down on fats and sugar!


  1. They might resemble a Cornish pasty (!) but I bet they taste much better.

  2. Yummy! They look so hearty, too!

  3. They are quite filling - but actually, I think I prefer a Cornish Pasty - potato and veg suits me better than olives and hardboiled eggs.

  4. They are quite filling - but actually, I think I prefer a Cornish Pasty - potato and veg suits me better than olives and hardboiled eggs.


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