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Measurements

Empanadas Paisas (Meat-Filled Turnovers)

1/2 lb. each of pork and beef
1 T. each of onion and scallion, chopped
1 t. each of ground cumin seed and salt
dash pepper
2 T. vegetable oil
2 cups water
1/2 cup each of chopped onions and chopped scallions
4 small tomatoes, peeled and chopped
1 lb. (4 medium-sized) potatoes, boiled with skin
1/2 T. fresh cumin seed, ground
1/2 T. salt
1/2 t. pepper
1 lb. dry yellow corn
1 T. salt
2 T. cornstarch
2 T. brown sugar

The night before, marinate the meat with the onions, scallions, salt, pepper and ground cumin seed. Cover the pan. The next day, brown the meat in the vegetable oil. Then return the marinade and add water. Cook until meat is tender (40 min). Remove and grind meat. Save the water. Sauté the onions and scallions in 4 T. oil. Add the chopped tomatoes and fry an additional 3 or 4 minutes. Mix in the ground meat and meat stock and cook for about 10 minutes. Peel and mash the cooled, boiled potatoes and add them to the meat and vegetable mixture. Mix the salt, pepper and ground cumin seed into the meat and potato mixture. Apart, boil the dry yellow corn in sufficient water to cover the corn, for about half an hour. Put the cooked corn through a grinder. To the ground corn add the salt, the cornstarch and the brown sugar. Knead the dough until it is thoroughly mixed and forma a firm ball. Pick off small pieces and form into the size of small balls. Flatten each piece thin. Put about 1 teaspoon of the meat mixture in the center of the flattened ball. Fold over and pinch edges together to close and form a pretty edge. Place in deep, hot vegetable oil and fry about 3 or 4 minutes until golden brown. Remove and put on paper towels in a colander. Serve immediately or reheat in a paper bag in the oven prior to using. The meat mixture can be made in advance and stored in the freezer, but the dough must be made fresh the day of use. Makes about 60 empanadas for hors d'oeuvres.


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