Plantain Empanadas

author: francineandrebecca

created: 2004-10-17 17:56:42



MMMM, good. These are darn delicious. I have to break my own "no fried food" laws to eat these, but they are wonderful. Originally from Rick Bayless's "Mexican Kitchen." Makes 12 empanadas. Serve with Tomatillo-Chipotle Salsa, added separately to the Recipe Files.


3 large (about 2 pounds total) yellow-ripe (not black and mushy-soft) plantains 1 cup all-purpose flour, plus a little more for forming the empanadas 3/4 tablespoon salt 1 1/2 cup (about 6 ounces) crumbled Mexican queso fresco (or pressed, salted farmer's cheese) Vegetable oil to a depth of 1 inch, for frying Coarse salt, for serving 1 cup Tomatillo-Chipotle Salsa for serving 1. The dough. Turn on the oven to 350 degrees. Cut the ends of the unpeeled plantains. Make a shallow incision down their length, then cut them crosswise in half. Bake the plantains on a baking sheet until very soft, about 40 minutes, then use 2 forks to peel back the skins to allow the steam to escape as they cool completely. Scrape the cooled plantains into a food processor and puree; there will be about 2 cups. Add the flour and salt, and pulse the mixture until the flour is incorporated. 2. Forming the empanadas. Divide the cheese into 12 equal portions. Divide the dough into 12 portions and roll into balls between your floured palms. Roll the balls lightly in flour. Place the ball on wax paper, slap a piece of wax paper on top. Using a rolling pin, roll out the plantain ball into a plantain disk, 4- to 5-inches around and about 1/8 inch thick. Place one portion of cheese on one half of the plantain disk, then fold over the other half. Press the edges firmly together with your fingertips to seal in the cheese. Place aside on a place covered with paper towel. Continue until you've made 12 empanadas. 3. Frying the empanadas. Turn the oven to the lowest setting and line a plate with paper towels. Heat the oil in a medium-to-large (9- to 10-inch) heavy skillet until hot - about 350 degrees on a deep-fry thermometer. Fry the empanadas 2 or 3 at a time, turning occasionally, until golden, about 2 minutes total. Drain on paper towels; sprinkle with coasrse salt and keep warm in a low oven until all are fried.