Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Black Bean Baked Empanadas and Spanish Rice

Yeah, I'm the kind of cook that enjoys the cooking process.  But even I like some shortcuts every now and then!  And this was one of those nights.  I wanted empanadas but I didn't want to make my own dough, and you know what?  That is okay sometimes!  So bring on the refrigerated pie dough and expect dinner within the hour.  And don't feel too bad about the shortcut (I do sometimes) because you are making Spanish rice from scratch.  Boxed mixes of anything just aren't good (except Ramen noodles and Oodles of Noodles, which are clearly always acceptable).

These empanadas are delicious.  They are filled with corn, black beans, jalapeño, salsa, and monterey jack cheese, and spiced with cumin, lime juice and fresh cilantro.  The pie dough works perfectly and is flaky and buttery!  Next time I will leave out the jalapeño, but that's just me (and my family.  We are big babies. Dousing the empanadas in sour cream helped though!)

Then there's the rice - don't skip it - which is cooked in stewed tomatoes and chicken stock, and flavored with chili powder, oregano, garlic salt and cumin.  Super tasty and so much better than any box mix of Spanish rice.  It will make you feel better about yourself for taking the pie dough shortcut :)


black bean baked empanadas and Spanish rice
from Hip 2 Save
serves 4

for the rice:
1 15-ounce can stewed tomatoes
1 1/2 cups chicken or vegetable stock
1 1/4 cups rice
1 tablespoon butter
2 teaspoons chili powder
3/4 teaspoon oregano
1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
1 teaspoon cumin
for the empanadas:
1/4 cup canned or frozen sweet corn
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and diced
1/2 cup black beans, rinsed
1/4 cup salsa
1 teaspoon cumin
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 lime, juiced
1/4 cup cilantro
1 package (14.1 ounce) refrigerated pie pastry
1/2 cup monterey jack cheese, shredded


1) Cook the rice: mash tomatoes with a potato masher or fork. In a medium saucepan, combine all ingredients and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat to low.  Cover and simmer 30 minutes or until rice is done.

2) Meanwhile, make the empanadas.  In a large bowl, mix corn, jalapeños, black beans, salsa, cumin, lime juice, and cilantro. Set aside.  Unroll pie pastry on floured surface.  Use a 4-inch wide cup or round cookie cutter to cut circles from the dough.  Roll out scrap pieces of dough for more circles to make about 20 in total.  You may have some of the filling left; reserve it to serve on the side.

3) Place bean mixture and a pinch of cheese on each circle.  Fold over and use a fork to press down and seal edges.

4) Lay each empanada on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet and bake in a 450 degree oven for about 12 minutes until browned.  Serve with remaining corn and black bean salsa.

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