Tuesday, July 13, 2010

My Picadillo Empanadas and Patatas Bravas

  I was having a craving (NO-I'm not expecting). I was craving empanadas one minute and picadillo the next. My thoughts were, "why not just combine everything I love about the two"?. Being from the greater Miami-Dade area I grew up with a lot of Latin influence. If you are not familliar with empanadas, you can read about the many different styles, listed by country
 here . I myself, am not a fan of the raisins usually used in the Cuban recipe for picadillo. By the same token, I am a fan of the chopped, hard boiled egg, diced potato, and peas, as used in some regions of Columbia.  I also use a Dominican "sofrito" for my seasoning, which I make in batches and stash in the freezer in 1/2 cup portions. I have also never attemted to make my own empanada dough, which you can see by the photo. I buy them pre-made. One day I will get brave, put on my "big girl panties" and give it a try.

  In the interest of trying to put an ingredient list and directions for my version, which I make the same way every time I make picadillo (from the seat of my pants, or better known as by taste and sight) I will try and put this into perspective for you. Or, you can just search the web for a recipe that suits your taste. A basic guideline is this one from  Goya .  Fried little meat pies are ridiculously comforting, trust me.

My Picadillo Empanadas
Courtesy of RecipeAddict


2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 pound ground beef
1/2 cup sofrito
1 small yellow onion, diced
1 garlic clove, minced
1/4 cup Manzanilla (Spanish) olives, roughly chopped
2 hard boiled eggs, diced
2-3 medium Yukon Gold potatoes, diced and boiled until just cooked (firm to touch)
10 Discos - Goya Empanada wrappers


In a large high sided skillet over medium high heat, add olive oil and saute onions until tender, add garlic and saute another minute and add sofrito. Cook until all liquid is absorbed about 3-5 minutes. Add beef and cook until lightly browned. Add potato cubes, chopped egg,and olives. Heat through till warmed. Remove to warmed serving bowl. Serve over rice, or use as filling for empanadas.
Makes 4 Servings

If using for filling in empanadas, put 2 tablespoons picadillo on one half of empanada disc.Have a small bowl of water on the side to seal the empanadas. You will then dip your finger into the bowl of water and run the water around one half of the empanada dough to facilitate the seal. Fold in half and  pressing with the tines of a fork, press the edges to seal closed. Place into deep fryer or a pot filled with oil (1/2 full, oil rises when the ingredients are added), and fry, approximately 3 minutes per side.

Patatas Bravas

Patatas Bravas
Courtesy of  Spain Recipes

3 tablespoons of olive oil
4 large Russet potatoes, peeled, and cut to 1-inch cubes
2 tablespoons minced onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 tablespoons Spanish paprika
1/4 teaspoon Tabasco Sauce
1/4 teaspoon ground thyme
1/2 cup (4 fl. oz) Ketchup
1/2 cup (4 fl. oz) mayonnaise
Chopped parsley, to garnish
1 cup (8 fl. oz) olive oil , for frying
In a saucepan, heat 3 tablespoons olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and sauté until the onion is soft. Turn off the heat, and add the paprika, Tabasco sauce, and thyme, stirring well. Transfer to a bowl and add the ketchup and mayonnaise. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.

Sprinkle the potatoes lightly with salt and black pepper. In a large skillet fry the potatoes in 1 cup (8 fl. oz) olive oil until cooked through and golden-brown, stirring occasionally. (Take care when adding the potatoes to the saucepan because the oil will splatter due to the salt). Drain the potatoes on paper towels, check the seasoning, add more salt if necessary, and set it aside.

Mix the potatoes with the sauce inmediately before serving to ensure that the potatoes retain their crispness. Garnish with chopped parsley and serve warm.
Makes 4 Servings

These potatoes were probably not the healthiest choice. Still, they sure were delicious. I will have to search for other variations of this recipe. Without the use of ketchup and mayo, which I am sure is not as authentic as it could be. Some recipes use tomato paste, though I was in a hurry to have something other than rice, (which is commonly served with empanadas), so I went with this shortcut veersion for the first time.

I am submiiting this to Priya at
MharoRajasthanRecipes who is hosting this month's AWED Challenge-Spain started by DK at ChefInYou .

My Picadillo Empanadas

Delicious Latin inspired empanadas.

See My Picadillo Empanadas on Key Ingredient.

My Picadillo Empanadas on Foodista
Carla and Michael


  1. This sounds like a great meal...I've never had an empanada...but any fried pie is my friend.

  2. Hey guys,

    These look very tasty and fun to make. Because they are deep fried however, I would shy away from making them, as I have a propensity to eat all my leftovers. The good news is in New York, we have every imaginable food, so I will definitely try these. They look a little like the Caribbean meat patties I am more familiar with, but seem more complex and interesting!

  3. Empanadas are definitely one of my favorite meals. My Mom made these often, a lot of work but well worth it. Yours look fantastic and I think I will have to make these soon.

  4. Colombian food is a favorite of mine. My friend makes me her patatas and sancocho. Fantastic job with the patatas and the empanadas. Love it.

  5. What a great recipe. I serve picadillo over rice, but I know most folks prefer to use it as an empanada filling. Yours look delicious. Blessings...Mary

  6. Oh wow, I love empanadas! They look great!

  7. Your Empanadas looks so good, yumm yumm. Thank you for visiting my blog and following me, you are really sweet.
    Following you:-)

  8. You sound a lot like me in having to remember to write down all the ingredients you used. I don't like the raisins in my empanadas either, but use the eggs and olives. I usually bake mine and the goya wrappers are a little stiff that way. I probably need to fry those. I've made an easy empanada dough that bakes well. Your Patatas Bravas look so good I'm going to try them!

  9. You're empanadas look delicious. I've really got to try making them.


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