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Super savory empanadas with a spicy dipping sauce

Black-eyed peas, golden corn, & chanterelle empanadas

This recipe originally comes from the Sweet Home Café Cookbook. I've been looking for creative ways to use chanterelles other than cream and dairy-laden pastas and pizzas. As I was flipping through the book, this recipe really stood out to me as an interesting way to honor some late summer/early fall produce in the form of an empanada, something so familiar to me as someone with family originally from Argentina.

I took this recipe and used an empanada dough that I'm more familiar with, which is baked, not fried, like the cookbook suggests, simply because I'm lazy and frying constantly brings up images of me burning down a whole block of houses (not like it's happened to me, but I'm a bit terrified of this regardless) and because it felt like a nice way to bring this recipe into the baked empanadas that evoke true comfort food for me.

It's funny for me to see empanadas served with a sauce. Every time I've shared empanadas with people both in the USA and in Germany, people ask for a dipping sauce to go along. I'm not totally sure where this comes from, but for me, this is like being given a ham and cheese sandwich and someone asking you for a gravy dipping sauce. Sure, you could totally do that and I'm sure it would be delicious, but it kind of compromises the "grab and go-ness" that a simple sandwich allows. This is the same for empanadas. But this recipe originally was served alongside a fresh salsa. I know how much José douses food in hot sauce, so I decided to make a riff on the sauce they recommend and to make a simple cooked sauce to dip the empanadas into. This sauce makes the dish. The tanginess of the sauce compliments the richness and ads a juiciness to the bean filling.

If you're in a rush, by all means use a jarred or bottled hot sauce and skip the homemade version in this recipe.

Serves 6

Ingredients

Empanada dough

225ml water

500g flour

50ml olive oil

1 tsp salt

Filling

1 ear corn, de-kerneled

1 tbsp olive oil

2 shallots, minced

1 garlic clove, minced

1/2 tsp ground cumin

340g chanterelle mushrooms, sliced

1/3 cup dried black-eyed peas, soaked overnight

1 tbsp parsley, minced

1/4 tsp fresh thyme

2 tbsp olive oil

1 tsp salt

black pepper

Sauce

4 fresh red chiles

7 tomatoes

1 red bell pepper

1 yellow bell pepper

1/2 onion

2 small cloves garlic, peeled

Recipe

STEP 1

Mix the dough ingredients together and let stand for 1-5 hours. Then roll out to 1/8 inch with plenty of flour and cut into 6-8" circular disks. You'll want 12 of them in total. Stack the disks with parchment paper between them. At this point you could freeze the disks to use at a later date if you have extra.

STEP 2

Preheat the oven to 350F. For the filling, heat a large pan on medium-high heat. Add a little olive oil and toss the corn kernels in until they begin to become fragrant and char. Turn the heat down to medium-low and add the shallots and garlic and cook until translucent, around 5 minutes. Add the cumin, give it a mix and then add the mushrooms. Season with salt and pepper and cook for a few more minutes, until the mushrooms soften.

STEP 3

Gently mash half of the black-eyed peas and add them all to the corn and mushroom pot. Set aside to cool. Once cool add the thyme and parsley and again, check for seasoning.

STEP 4

To shape the empanadas, place 2-3 tbsp of filling into each wrapper. Fold it in half and seal the edges. Growing up I was taught how to crimp the empanadas as we do in Argentina, but you can seal these simply by pressing the edges together with a little water and a fork.

STEP 5

Line a baking tray with parchment paper and place each empanada on the tray without toughing each other. Brush with a smidge of olive oil. Let cook until the tops begin to brown lightly, then remove from the oven and serve warm.

STEP 6

Serve with your favorite hot sauce or make a homemade salsa below.

STEP 7

Bring a bot of water to boil. Add all the salsa ingredients and cook for 20 minutes until they all soft. Then remove the stems from the peppers, drain the liquid and toss everything in a blender. Blend until smooth and return to the pot. Season with salt to taste.

More

ChanterelleCornTomatoBell pepperSeptember

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MEET YOUR MEAL

Every Sunday evening, I send out a newsletter with the following week's dinner menu, and the seasonal produce featured. The newsletter is free, and I won't share or sell your email address.

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- Julia Feld