Black Bean Empanadas

by angelika on March 8, 2014

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Empanadas are one of my favorite meals to make on a leisurely weekend afternoon. You can stuff them with just about anything, and they are usually a crowd pleaser. These are stuffed with black beans, butternut squash and chevre. They have a nice sweet and savory flavor baked into a flaky pastry crust. They taste just as good cold as hot, so the leftovers are often packed for lunch. You know once- when I was an overambitious  mom with only one child- I made mini versions of these to send as preschool snack. That would never happen today. Three kids has been an easy transition for me in every way except the kitchen. I just can’t seem to put together the time for long projects most days. These have a lot of down time, and you can make the crust and filling ahead of time, so they fit the bill.

This recipe is adapted from Veganomicon, and has become an all time family favorite.

To make the party combine all the dry ingredients in a food processor. Add the butter and shortening and pulse 4-5 times until the mixture resembles bread crumbs and peas. Add the water through the feed tube and spin until it just comes together. Turn out onto a board covered in plastic wrap, then wrap it and press into a disk. Let the dough rest in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.

Roast the squash in a 400 oven. I used butternut. Acorn squash is also great. Slice in half lengthwise, scoop out the seeds, then lay cut side down and an oiled sheet tray. Bake for 30-50 minutes depending on size and type. You poke it in the back with a knife and if it passes through easily it’s done. You can also use the store bought cubed squash- which I did this time. Just roast until done. They will be mashed in the end so either way is fine. I don’t think the cubed ones save you any time- I just happen to have them around.

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Dry roast the cumin and coriander seeds to bring out their flavor, then blend them in a coffee grinder. If you don’t have a coffee/spice grinder you can skip this step. I just really feel the two minutes or so it takes makes a real difference in the depth of flavor. If you only have pre-ground spices it’s a good idea to add them to the oil to lightly toast when you cook. This will also help release the oils in the spice.

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In a large pan saute the onion until translucent. You can add jalapeno if you are using it. I leave it out, but if my kids were not eating this, or not such sissies about heat, I would prefer the jalapeno flavor. Add the garlic and spices and go another minute. Then add in the squash and saute for 5 minutes. (If you roasted whole squash, scoop it out with a tablespoon and add to the pan) Add a couple of teaspoons of water if it seems dry. Add in the beans and salt and saute for 2 more minutes. Add lime juice and maple syrup and stir. Then add the chevre and mash it all together. I used a masher, but a fork works great too. Cover and set aside while you roll out the dough.

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Roll the dough out about 1/2 inch thick. Put a bowl over it and cut out the circles. Alternately you can make squares or smaller circles. Whatever you like. Then fill with 1/4 cup of filling- for the size I made. I oil the sheet pan first and then fill them on top of it. Use an egg wash to seal the outside, and crimp closed. Egg wash the top. Cut a couple of steam slits on the top and continue on with the rest.

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Bake at 400 for 25-30 minutes, until they are golden. Let them cool a bit before serving. Serve warm or room temp.

Black Bean Empanadas
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: entree
Serves: 6-8
Ingredients
  • ~Crust~
  • 1¼ cup all purpose flour
  • ¾ cup whole wheat pastry flour
  • ¼ cup cornmeal
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • ½ cup cold butter, cubed
  • ¼ cup shortening (non hydrogenated)
  • 4-6 TBS ice water
  • ~Filling~
  • 1 squash (acorn or butternut)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 red or yellow onion, diced
  • 2 jalapenos, seeds removed and diced (optional)
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons coriander seeds
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 2 tablespoons water if needed
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 2 teaspoons maple syrup
  • ¼ cup chevre
  • 1 egg beaten with 1 tsp water for egg wash
Instructions
  1. To make the party combine all the dry ingredients in a food processor. Add the butter and shortening and pulse 4-5 times until the mixture resembles bread crumbs and peas. Add the water through the feed tube and spin until it just comes together. Turn out onto a board covered in plastic wrap, then wrap it and press into a disk. Let the dough rest in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.
  2. Roast the squash in a 400 oven.
  3. I used butternut. Acorn squash is also great. Slice in half lengthwise, scoop out the seeds, then lay cut side down and an oiled sheet tray.
  4. Bake for 30-50 minutes depending on size and type. You poke it in the back with a knife and if it passes through easily it’s done.
  5. You can also use the store bought cubed squash.
  6. Dry roast the cumin and coriander seeds to bring out their flavor, then blend them in a coffee grinder. If you don’t have a coffee/spice grinder you can skip this step.
  7. In a large pan saute the onion until translucent. You can add jalapeno if you are using it.
  8. Add the garlic and spices and go another minute. Then add in the squash and saute for 5 minutes. (If you roasted whole squash, scoop it out with a tablespoon and add to the pan) Add a couple of teaspoons of water if it seems dry. Add in the beans and salt and saute for 2 more minutes. Add lemon juice and maple syrup and stir. Then add the chevre and mash it all together. I used a masher, but a fork works great too. Cover and set aside while you roll out the dough.
  9. Roll the dough out about ½ inch thick. Put a bowl over it and cut out the circles. Alternately you can make squares or smaller circles. Whatever you like.
  10. Then fill with ¼ cup of filling- for the size I made. I oil the sheet pan first and then fill them on top of it.
  11. Use an egg wash to seal the outside, and crimp closed.
  12. Egg wash the top.
  13. Cut a couple of steam slits on the top and continue on with the rest.
  14. Bake at 400 for 25-30 minutes, until they are golden. Let them cool a bit before serving. Serve warm or room temp.

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