You know those days when you just a get a craving for chocolate and a simple candy bar just won't do? Well, I was having one of these days yesterday. Plus the fact that it has been quite cool this week, here in central New York, and all I can think of is baking and making soup. This empanada dough recipe is an original recipe that my Tia Minerva, from Mexico, shared with me ... minus the chocolate part. I cannot wait to show her my creation! And you know how you always have those ripe bananas that you keep meaning to make banana bread with, well so I had to do something with them. They make a great filling for chocolate empanandas!! Have fun with your recipes and don't be afraid to think outside the box!!!
2 3/4 to 3 cups flour, plus more for dusting
½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
¾ cup sugar
1 cup shortening
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
½ cup cinnamon/anise tea
1 egg white mixed with 1 tablespoon of water for brushing
2 cups diced bananas
¾ cup peanut butter
¾ cup dulce de leche
1 cup milk chocolate chips
Fresh berries of your choice (optional)
Whipped cream or ice cream (optional)
A beautiful, chocolatey dough...
If you do not have a tortilla press yet, I highly suggest you add one to your very important kitchen tools! It's the best!
1. In a bowl, combine the banana, peanut butter, and chocolate chips. Slightly warm the dulce de leche to soften and add it to the bowl. Stir well to combine, cover and set aside.
2. In a glass cup, add ½ cup water, 1-inch piece of cinnamon stick, and ½ teaspoon anise seeds. Microwave for 2 to 3 minutes to steep. Remove from micro and let cool slightly.
3. In a bowl, sift the flour, cocoa, baking powder, and salt together, then set aside. In another bowl, add the shortening and warm in the microwave until shortening melts. Remove from microwave, strain the tea and add to the melted shortening, stir gently. Gradually add in the flour mixture until dough forms. Cover with plastic wrap and let it set for 1 hour.
4. Preheat oven to 375ºF. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Make 20 dough balls, about the size of a golf ball. Line a tortilla press with a cut to fit plastic storage bag. Lightly roll the dough ball in flour, then press dough balls to about 4 inches, fill with a couple of tablespoons of filling and pinch edges shut. Brush the empanadas with egg wash and bake in preheated oven for 25 to 28 minutes.
5. Cool completely and dust with powdered sugar. Serve with fresh berries and whipped cream or vanilla ice cream. The empanadas will soften slightly after they been stored overnight. Yield 20 empanadas.
Note: If you do not have a tortilla press, roll out the dough with a litle bit of flour and use a small bowl to make round cut-outs, fill and bake.
Makes about 20 medium empanadas, but could make 40 mini empanadas for a cookie exchange!
Other recipes by Sonia:
Mexican Red Rice
Annatto-Citrus Marinated Chicken
Chile Relleno with Serrano Shrimp
Cheesy Chorizo Bread
Flank Steak Tacos
Tamarind and Chile Chicken Wings
Frijoles Borrachos con Chorizo
Chile Garlic Shrimp Kabobs
Chicken Enchilada Soup with Chayotes
Dulce de Leche and Chocolate Chip Chimichangas
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