Monday, December 20, 2010

Trini Cuisine: Empandas

I'm typing with one hand here. Enjoying some delicious noms and as promised I'm bringing pictures and a recipe for you to try. I've always had a love for (fried)cornmeal and I love meat so why not put it together? This is what the Trini's call 'empanadas'. Other Caribbean islands will call it something else. I found this recipe in the Naparima Girls' Cookbook. Apparently some school here in Trinidad made a whole cookbook. It's been around FOREVER. Trust me on this one. So here's the recipe:

4 cups cornmeal
1/2 cup flour
2 tsp. salt
water to bind
2 tbsp butter
2 tbsp Cookeen (instead of using this, I used this. I JUST realized. Still tastes pretty good though)
3 tsp baking powder (which I TOTALLY forgot)
1/2 lb ground beef
1/2 tsp salt (I put two tsp. I sucked at cooking today. Oh em gee)
2 tbsp oil (to brown beef)
seasonings to taste (salt, pepper, garlic, onion etc)


  • Season ground beef and brown in oil
  • Prepare cornmeal mixture:
    • Sift flour, salt, baking powder and cornmeal together
    • Add butter and Cookeen and using fingertips, mix thoroughly until mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs
    • Add enough water to make a soft dough
    • Knead lightly
    • Cut into pieces the size of a small egg and flatten to 1/8 to 1/2 inch
  • Put about 1 tbsp meat on one circle, dampen the edge and cover with second circle
  • Squeeze the edges together (gently!) and fry in hot oil until golden brown
  • Drain on brown paper and serve hot
And here are the pictures!!

This is what my cornmeal mixture turned out to look like. It ended up to be too dry. The mixture should be sticky and annoying to work with.

Minced beef! Om nom nom. It's got salt, black pepper, garlic and onions in it. We were out of homemade green seasoning *sad face*

Cooking up the filling. Om nom nom!


Sperm donor came to take over the whole operation. Spoiled me mood man!

These were the ones I made

The sperm donor destroyed it! Look at that huge crack!

Almost done making them...

Onwards to frying!

First one out of the fryer. Check out the golden brown deliciousness

So this is what it looked inside. The outside was nice and crispy but the inside wasn't cooked all the way so the others got an extra couple minutes. Still tasted great.

Bite taken out of it. Yum-o

Golden-brown deliciousnesses. Note how the one the sperm donor ruined is being nom'd


Finished! Note how the sperm donor's own looks

Broke one in half....

...and took a bite. Yum!

This is what my plate looked like while I was writing this

Soooooo goooooodd!! Notice my handwritten recipe underneath the plate

So now my tummy is full and I'm feeling so sleepy *yawns* So that's my cooking. Hope you enjoyed! Tell me how yours came out.

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