Empanada de Carne Peruana (Peruvian Meat Empanada)

As I have mentioned in the other posts, I have been exploring Peruvian cooking (since I will be gaining Peruvian sister-in-law soon).  I realized that I really like Peruvian food (well, for most part, I haven’t even touched the surface of Peruvian cuisine).  It’s like an awakening into the new culinary world – for example, I was never into Mexican cuisine, but later on I realized I was so traumatized by the Tex-Mex food with all that cheese, I associated Mexican food to Tex-Mex (I feel so sad that I didn’t find out about the real Mexican food earlier).  Now that I have been awakened, I’m constantly thinking of different excuses to visit the Mexican eateries.  I wish we have a good Peruvian restaurant in Philadelphia, I heard of one, but I need to try it out. 

Anyway, today’s recipe was given to me by my future sister-in-law, in fact she sent me a video link to this Peruvian chef making this empanada (which was done all in Spanish).  So, after going back and forth about instructions and converting the measurements, etc, etc, I decided I can try this out now!!

( this should have turned more golden brown, but I was in a rush to get this out for dinnertime, but make sure it gets golden brown!!)

This will yield about 22:

5 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoon salt
1 cup butter, chilled and diced in small cubes
1-1/2 cup cold water
1 egg yolk

Mix the dry ingredients in a large stainless bowl or on top of a clean kitchen counter.

Mix the butter and the flour mixture with the pastry cutter/blender until the mixture resembles coarse cornmeal.  Don’t be afraid to use your hands to assist you with this. 

Whish the egg yolk in the cold water.  Make a well in the flour mixture and gradually pour in the water mixture as you mix the flour with your hand.  You may need to add more water depending on the dryness of your dough.  Knead the dough until smooth and form a ball.  Wrap in the plastic wrapper and keep it in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes. 


Approx. 1 pound ground meat (I used turkey)
2 onions, finely diced
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
2 teaspoon salt
2-3 teaspoon ground cumin
1 Tablespoon Aji Amarillo (Peruvian yellow pepper paste, please refer to this post for more details on this paste.
1 bunch parsley, chopped
About 3 boiled eggs, sliced
**Lime or lemon wedges

Sauté onions, garlic, pepper, salt, cumin and aji amarillo. 

Add the meat and cook until done.


Take the dough out from the fridge.  On a well floured surface roll the dough into a long log and slice into about 11 slices.


Now, cut each slice into halves.


With a roller, roll out each ball into a circle.  I found out the I worked better if I rolled mine out to be more a rectangle. But whatever works for you!


Fill about 1 Tablespoon of meat filling and top it off with a slice of egg.  Brush around the dough with olive oil.


Lift the end closer to you and seal it with the other end.  Curl the edges.  Repeat with other dough balls.


Brush each empanada with beaten egg.  Bake in a pre-heated 400F oven for approx. 15 minutes, or until golden brown. 

Squeeze some lime or lemon juice on an empanada before you eat!

My opinion:  Oh gosh, can you say delicioso!!!  My family wanted more and more, in fact my husband and my 2 daughters are all taking this for their lunches tomorrow!! 

2 things I will improve next time:  Make sure my empanada turn golden brown, and make the dough slightly thicker!!  Other than that, this was awesome!!

Revised on Oct. 28th, 2011:

So, I made another batch of empanadas.  I just didn’t like how I made it the last time (with thin dough and not golden browned).  This turned out better.


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