My first try of empanada came on a school exchange trip to the beautiful Salamanca, when on a picnic the lovely Spanish family I was staying with produced this huge, amazing looking rectangular pie. It was cut into great big slices and passed it round us all, oozing with a thick tomato sauce, vegetables and tuna. It was absolutely delicious!
Since then I have had many more empanadas, with many variations on the filling, and think the smaller ‘empanadillas’ are a great Spanish version of our slightly drier English pasty! This recipe is one I tweaked for my husband, who is not keen on the addition of tuna. The egg adds a lovely extra flavour but could always be left out if you prefer.
These little beauties are great in packed lunches, for children and grown ups alike! You can also make a batch up and freeze them before cooking to get out and pop in the oven whenever you need them.
Ingredientes (Make 6 to 8 empanadillas)
- Ready to roll shortcrust pastry (you can make a dough, like a pizza dough, as they would traditionally in Spain but I think short crust works just as well)
- 1 small container of sieved tomatoes (Passata or tomato frito) about 250ml
- 1 large onion, diced
- 1 large garlic clove, crushed
- 1 large courgette diced
- 1 red pepper diced
- 1 green pepper (or yellow) diced
- 1tsp fresh rosemary, finely chopped
- 1 tbsp thyme, chopped
- 1 tsp sweet paprika
- salt and black pepper
- 2 tbsp good quality olive oil
- 2 hard boiled eggs, sliced
- 1 beaten egg
- Heat the oil in a large frying pan and gently fry off your onion, courgette and pepper until soft and sweet but not browned (this can take about 10 minutes to do properly), adding the garlic for the last couple of minutes.
- Add the tomato and paprika, and then the herbs, season with salt and pepper.
- Leave to cook gently for another 5-10 minutes and taste. Leave the mixture to cool.
- Roll out your pastry (as thin as you can) and then cut into circles about 10-12 cm across (use a large cookie cutter or small bowl as a guide).
- Brush the edges of the circles with some beaten egg, put a generous tablespoon of filling in the middle, followed by a slice of boiled egg.
- Bring the two opposite sides of the pastry up to meet over the filling and then pinch the edges together. Turn the empanadilla onto its side and then use the back of a knife to press the edges to seal.
- Place on a lightly oiled baking tray, brush with egg and then bake in a preheated oven on 170° for about 20 minutes until golden and crisp. Serve warm or cold.