Saturday, May 25, 2013

Turkey Empanadas from the AFBA Cookbook

I've been in need of foods that I can take to work with me for lunch. Flipping through *our* new Austin Food Blogger Cookbook, there are certainly several recipes that caught my eye, but last weekend, I decided to make the turkey empanadas from my good friend Girl Gone Grits. I like to cook AND to bake, so these were right up my alley.

You'll find the recipe on page 69 of the book, and it's an easy one to follow. Again, having experience with baking, I enjoyed the process of making the dough. For those less-inclined to cover your kitchen in flour, you could use the frozen Goya empanada disks (though they're harder to find sometimes) or a pre-made pie crust dough that you find in the refrigerated section, like Pillsbury. If making your own dough, it definitely needs the time to chill in the fridge before rolling it out, so don't skimp on that step; you could even make the dough the night before.

For the filling, I didn't have fresh sage, so I used fresh thyme and a bit of fresh oregano; I used an all-purpose salt-free seasoning in place of the lemon pepper, and added a bit more garlic and preserved lemons.

Unfortunately when preparing my dough, I had turned my back to the kitchen counter for a moment to wash my hands, when my "assistant" got involved! *sigh*
Anyway, the end result is quite worth it! These empanadas totally remind me of my trip to Morocco in 2008 (one of the reasons I started this blog!), so I thought I'd photograph them on the plate I bought there. I did not make the yogurt sauce that Ms. Grits includes the recipe for, but it does sound good! You could even add some chopped olives to the filling to give it even more of a Moroccan flair. They freeze well too, so they have been convenient for lunch; I do prefer them reheated in the oven/toaster oven as opposed to the microwave.
I should also add that I tested the Bacon Corn Pesto Pasta (page 130) from Apron Adventures back in the fall when we were editing the book. I LOVED it, and can't wait for some good fresh summer corn to make this again!