Julie Rose’s Empanadas

Instructions

Dough

Sift the flour into a large bowl. Stir in 1 teaspoon of the salt and the sugar. Blend the chilled butter and shortening into the flour mixture until almost blended (using hands or a pastry cutter).

Whisk the egg yolks with 3/4 cup water. Stir the wet mixture into the flour mixture, a little at a time, until the dough starts to come together.

Knead the dough, adding more of the water-egg mixture as needed, until the dough is smooth. The dough will seem a bit crumbly until it has thoroughly chilled. Add more salt, if needed, to taste.

Cover the dough with plastic wrap and refrigerate for about 1 hour. When ready to use, the dough should be soft and smooth.

Sofrito

Blend all ingredients in a blender or food processor until it comes together. Do not add water.

Filling

Preheat a large sauté pan on medium-high 2-3 minutes. Add 1 tablespoon oil to pan, followed by ground beef. Cook meat 6–8 minutes, stirring to crumble, until no pink remains and meat is 160°F. Season with adobo seasoning. (Drain any excess fat from the side of the pan if desired).

Add 3/4 cup sofrito to seasoned meat. Allow to cool slightly before making empanadas.

Assemble empanadas

Place the dough onto a floured surface and roll into a thin sheet before cutting. You can also make small balls with the dough and roll out (or flatten) each ball into a round shape. Shapes do not have to be perfectly round.

Place 1–2 tablespoons of filling in empanada dough; fold dough over filling and press with fork to seal.

Heat 2 cups of oil in frying pan until 365°F. Fry empanadas 5–8 minutes or until golden.

Mix together equal amounts ketchup and mayonnaise to create a sauce; serve with empanadas.

Ingredients

For dough

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon + 1/2 teaspoon salt (divided, or to taste)
  • 1 tablespoon + 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter (chilled)
  • 3/4 cup shortening (chilled)
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 3/4 cup water or milk

For sofrito

  • 1 bunch cilantro
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 green pepper, chopped
  • 1 cubanelle pepper, chopped
  • 2 small red sweet peppers, chopped
  • 1 cup garlic

For filling

  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil + 2 cups for frying
  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1/2 teaspoon adobo seasoning
  • 3/4 cup sofrito

For sauce

  • Ketchup
  • Mayonnaise

Instructions

Dough

Sift the flour into a large bowl. Stir in 1 teaspoon of the salt and the sugar. Blend the chilled butter and shortening into the flour mixture until almost blended (using hands or a pastry cutter).

Whisk the egg yolks with 3/4 cup water. Stir the wet mixture into the flour mixture, a little at a time, until the dough starts to come together.

Knead the dough, adding more of the water-egg mixture as needed, until the dough is smooth. The dough will seem a bit crumbly until it has thoroughly chilled. Add more salt, if needed, to taste.

Cover the dough with plastic wrap and refrigerate for about 1 hour. When ready to use, the dough should be soft and smooth.

Sofrito

Blend all ingredients in a blender or food processor until it comes together. Do not add water.

Filling

Preheat a large sauté pan on medium-high 2-3 minutes. Add 1 tablespoon oil to pan, followed by ground beef. Cook meat 6–8 minutes, stirring to crumble, until no pink remains and meat is 160°F. Season with adobo seasoning. (Drain any excess fat from the side of the pan if desired).

Add 3/4 cup sofrito to seasoned meat. Allow to cool slightly before making empanadas.

Assemble empanadas

Place the dough onto a floured surface and roll into a thin sheet before cutting. You can also make small balls with the dough and roll out (or flatten) each ball into a round shape. Shapes do not have to be perfectly round.

Place 1–2 tablespoons of filling in empanada dough; fold dough over filling and press with fork to seal.

Heat 2 cups of oil in frying pan until 365°F. Fry empanadas 5–8 minutes or until golden.

Mix together equal amounts ketchup and mayonnaise to create a sauce; serve with empanadas.

Julie Rose’s Empanadas

Empanadas can be intimidating because they’re so well known as a staple of the Hispanic community, but Julie Rose thinks her family recipe can hold its own against the best of them.

Getting the dough right is an art form; it definitely takes finesse. Her tip is don't overwork it. It’ll feel like you need to get all of the lumps out, but you don’t! Using a fluttering motion with your fingers while kneading will help to spread the lumps of shortening and butter.

Julie Rose calls this the “Puerto Rican addition” to the classic empanada. Here are some quick tips to help you get this part of the recipe right: Put onions into the blender first, closest to the blade, so that moisture can invite every other component in. But don't blend the onions too long or you’ll ruin the consistency of the sofrito. And finally—since we know you’ll want to make more empanadas later—put the rest of the sofrito in the freezer! It’ll keep well and give you another beautiful batch when you’re ready.

Julie Rose has brought her Hispanic heritage to Thanksgiving for as long as she can remember, and now she’s excited to share it with you. Expand your table this Thanksgiving and celebrate this delicious and classic dish.