Want empanadas but don’t have all night to let your dough sit? This crusty corn dough is ready for use immediately.
If you prefer wheat over corn flour, try our other empanada recipe, Empanadas with Tender Wheat Pastry.
Gather your ingredients! Pictured here is the ingredients for the savory filling.
Peeling a plaintain is a bit trickier than a banana. Chop off the two ends of the plantain, then cut a slit along the side. Widen the slit with your fingers and peal the fruit away from the hard rind. In the spirit of this quick recipe, my plaintain could stand more time to ripen! You should wait until the skin turns yellow to use them.
Wrap the plantains in aluminum foil and bake them for 20 minutes at 350°F.
Dice the small yellow onion and sauté until the onion becomes translucent.
Prepare a cup of cooked rice. Ad 1/2 cup of dry rice to 1 1/2 cup of vegetable broth. raise to a boil, then cover and simmer until the rice is soft. Uncover and continue to simmer, stirring occasionally, until the excess moisture has boiled off.
Dice the green bell pepper and large tomato.
Stir the green peppers into the hot pan with the transluscent onions.
Add the rest of the filling ingredients and stir, cooking on medium heat until the ingredients are soft. This is the green pepper and onion with one cup of rice, one diced tomato, a15 oz can of black beans, 1/4 cup of vegetable broth, 1/2 teaspoon of salt, 4 teaspoons of minced garlic, 1 teaspoon of oregano, and 2 teaspoons of cumin.
Dice the baked plantains. You want the pieces to be small enough that they won’t interfere in folding a 4″ pocket out of thin dough.
Once the filling is ready, make the dough. The dough ingredients are quite simple: just masarepa corn flour, salt, tap water, and a bit of oil for brushing.
Mix 1 tsp of salt thoroughly into 2 1/2 cups of corn flour in a large mixing bowl.
While mixing the dough with your fingers, slowly stream in about 2 cups of warm water. The dough has enough water when it’s soft, moist, and dense. Err on the side of extra moisture, because dry dough is prone to cracking. Continue kneading until the dough has no lumps. The great thing about corn flour is that oyu don’t have to worry about over-kneading, since there are no gluten strands!
Split the dough innto even halves, then thrice more, until you have 16 evenly sized dough balls, about the size of meatballs. Keep these covered under a moist towel until you are ready to roll them out into empanada wraps.
Place one of the dough balls on a piece of saran wrap. Place another piece of saran wrap over the top. Slightly flatten the dough into a disc by pressing down with your hand. Flatten the dough into 1/4 inch thick wrap y rolling out with a rolling pin. Covered in saran wrap, no part of the dough should actually touch the rolling pin.
Remove the top layer of saran wrap and set aside to use again. Handle the dough through the bottom saran, avoiding touching it. Scoop about 1 1/2 teaspoons of the filling from the pan and the diced plantains onto the rolled out wrap. Fold the wrap in half and pinch the edge in a semicircle to seal the empanada.
Fold the bottom layer of saran wrap over the empanada pocket. Then, take a 4″ bowl and press it over the edge of the empanada to make a nice, even arc.
Peel off the rough edges of the dough and press your fingers around the dough to firm up the seal.
Oil a fork so that it doesn’t stick to the dough, and use it to make dimples around the rim.
Repeat this rolling and folding process using the two squares of saran wrap for all 16 dough balls. Place the uncooked empanadas on a non-stick cooking surface like parchment paper or silicone. Brush them with a bit of vegetable oil.
Bake them at 375 °F for about 22 minutes. This is a much healthier option than deep frying.
The finished empanadas will have a crusty outer texture with a more golden color than the raw dough.
Serve warm with your favorite salsas. Enjoy!