Chicken & Paprika Empanadas


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If you make these you’ll agree that you can never have too many empanadas on the table. I made these in advance for a party next week so haven’t eaten one yet. I did eat quite a bit of the filling though which left me short of four empanadas for my guests.


400g plain flour
salt & pepper
80g unsalted butter
3 eggs (2 lightly beaten)
60ml white wine
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 chicken breast fillet (very finely chopped)
1 small onion (finely diced)
1 clove garlic (finely chopped)
1 teaspoon dried tarragon
1 1/2 teaspoons Spanish paprika (smoked)
salt & pepper
3 tablespoons red wine
5 tablespoons canned chopped tomatoes
2 teaspoons tomato puree
1 tablespoon fresh flat-leaf parsley (chopped)

Sift the flour and 1 teaspoon or salt into a large bowl. Rub the butter in with your hands until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Combine the beaten egg with the wine and pour into the mixture. Mix with a flat knife to form the dough. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and shape into a large ball. Don’t knead the pastry otherwise it’ll be tough as old boots. Cover in plastic wrap and refridgerate for 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, to make the filling heat the oil in a frying pan over a medium heat. Gently fry the onions and garlic for 5 minutes until soft. Add the chicken and fry, breaking up any lumps that form for 4 minutes. Add the tarragon and paprika and stir then add the red wine, let it sizzle then add the tomato puree and tomatoes and stir well. Let this simmer for 5 minutes until thick. Remove from the heat, season with salt & pepper and stir through the parsley.

After the pastry has chilled cut in half, dust a work surface with flour and roll out on half of the pastry to a tickness of about 2mm. Using a pastry cutter or top of a drinking glass cut into 12 rounds. Place a heaped teaspoon of the filling in the centre of a pastry round and fold up the edges. With a little water wet the edges and then press together with your fingers. Dust each empanada in flour. Repeat with the remaining pastry and mixture.

NOTE: If you are making in advance you can stop here. Arrange the empanadas on some grease proof paper, cover and freeze until you need them.

If you’re cooking them right away, preheat the oven to 190ºC. Lightly oil a baking sheet and using the remaining eggs, beaten, brush each empanada before baking in the oven for 30 minutes until golden. You can also cook from frozen – just reduce the oven temperature to 180ºC and add 10-15 minutes to the cooking time – being careful not to burn them.

Hot or cold.

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