South America Vegetarian Recipes

Clasico Argentino’s-Argentinian Empanadas with Spinach and Cheese Recipe

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Vegetarian – South America

Argentinian Empanadas with Spinach and Cheese Recipe

Introduction: Argentinian empanadas are delightful pastry pockets that are enjoyed as a snack, appetizer, or even a main course. This vegetarian version features a luscious filling of sautéed spinach, melted cheese, onions, and aromatic spices. The flaky pastry perfectly complements the savory and cheesy interior, making these empanadas a beloved treat for all occasions.

Preparation Time: 1 hour Cooking Time: 25 minutes Total Time: 1 hour 25 minutes Serving: Makes about 12 empanadas

Ingredients:

For the Filling:

  • 2 cups fresh spinach, washed and chopped
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • Salt and pepper to taste

For the Dough:

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, cold and cut into small cubes
  • 1/2 to 3/4 cup cold water

For Sealing and Glazing:

  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 2 tablespoons milk

Instructions:

  1. Prepare the Filling:
    • Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat.
    • Add chopped onions and sauté until translucent, about 3-4 minutes.
    • Add minced garlic and sauté for an additional 1 minute.
    • Stir in the chopped spinach and cook until wilted, about 2-3 minutes.
    • Season with ground cumin, paprika, salt, and pepper. Mix well.
    • Remove from heat and let the mixture cool slightly.
    • Stir in shredded mozzarella cheese, ensuring it’s evenly distributed. Set aside.
  2. Make the Dough:
    • In a large mixing bowl, combine the all-purpose flour and salt.
    • Add the cold, cubed butter to the flour mixture.
    • Use your fingers or a pastry cutter to work the butter into the flour until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
    • Gradually add cold water, a little at a time, and knead the dough until it comes together. Be careful not to overwork the dough.
    • Form the dough into a ball, wrap it in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
  3. Assemble the Empanadas:
    • Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C).
    • On a lightly floured surface, roll out the chilled dough to a thickness of about 1/8 inch.
    • Using a round cutter or a small plate, cut out circles of dough (approximately 5-6 inches in diameter).
    • Place a spoonful of the spinach and cheese filling onto one half of each dough circle, leaving a small border around the edges.
    • Fold the other half of the dough over the filling, creating a half-moon shape.
    • Press the edges of the dough together to seal the empanadas. You can use a fork to crimp the edges for a decorative touch.
  4. Bake the Empanadas:
    • In a small bowl, mix the beaten egg and milk to create an egg wash.
    • Place the assembled empanadas on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
    • Brush the tops of the empanadas with the egg wash, which will give them a golden and shiny finish.
    • Bake in the preheated oven for about 20-25 minutes, or until the empanadas are golden brown.
  5. Serve and Enjoy:
    • Remove the empanadas from the oven and let them cool slightly before serving.
    • These empanadas are delicious on their own or served with chimichurri sauce or salsa on the side.

Tips:

  • Make sure the dough is chilled before rolling it out to prevent it from becoming too sticky.
  • Experiment with different types of cheese for variations in flavor and texture.
  • Customize the spices according to your taste preferences.
  • If you have leftover empanadas, you can reheat them in the oven at 350°F (175°C) for about 10 minutes.

Argentinian empanadas with spinach and cheese are a delightful fusion of flavors and textures, encapsulated in a crispy, flaky pastry. Whether enjoyed as a party appetizer or a comforting snack, these empanadas are sure to satisfy your taste buds.

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