The empanada is a rich and satisfying pastry often compared to an American turnover but is far more versatile. The pastry is shaped like a crescent moon with a ribbon of dough running around the edge and is either baked or fried. The bread which makes the pocket is made out of cornflour dough or regular flour dough. The insides are stuffed with different types of fillings according to the taste of the person or the occasion. Crab-filled empanadas are one of the most popular types of empanadas.
The Origin Of The Empanada
The origin of the empanada can be traced back to 1520. The roots of the dish are from Spain or Galicia, and their first recorded appearance was during the Moorish Invasions of the Iberian Kingdom. The dish was inspired by a mix of French, Arabian, Catalan, and Italian pastries and was initially made as one big pie that would be cut into individual servings. When they were first invested, Empanadas were usually filled with Chicken or Tuna. With time and as the popularity of the dish increased, every country created its own take on the fillings.
Making Empanadas And Serving Suggestions
The first step of making an empanada is creating its dough. The process is relatively easy with some flour, shortening, egg, egg whites, vinegar, and water. The dough is kneaded until it is smooth and rolled into a thin sheet that is strong enough to hold the mixture. The dough is cut into circles, usually using cookie cutters, and kept aside for the filling.
The filling is usually any type of protein, some chopped vegetables, and spices. Once the filling is ready, it is placed in the middle of the circle pieces of dough, and the edges are connected together and crimped with a fork or by grabbing and pinching the edges with fingers.
The final step is to fry or bake the empanadas until the outsides are dark golden and the filling is cooked through. The empanadas are usually served with a variety of sauces and are eaten as an appetizer or a side with lunch or dinner. Breakfast empanadas are also getting quite popular with chocolate or apple fillings.
Here are some fun facts about empanadas that will amaze and entertain you:
- The world celebrates national empanada day on April 8th
- Cubans eat empanadas more than any other nation and consume them at any mealtime.
- In Indonesia, empanadas are known as pastel or panada.
- The word empanada is derived from the Spanish verb empanar,which means to wrap or coat in bread.
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