November is well on its way and before you know it we’ll be pulling out the flannel sheets and bundling up in our down coats. Whether baking warm treats for the family, entertaining for the holidays, or dealing with itchy dry skin, Avocados from Mexico has the answers to all of your readers’ winter woes!
Rich, creamy avocados paired with warm, salty cheese will make these mouth-watering Avocado Cheese Empanadas with Ancho Chiles and instant favorite with holiday party guests.
Avocado Cheese Empanadas with Ancho Chiles Recipe
1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
2-1/3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
3 ancho chiles, stemmed and seeded
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 onion, thinly sliced
1 garlic clove, minced
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
2 teaspoons brown sugar
1 avocado from Mexico, halved, pitted, peeled and diced
8 ounces cotija or feta cheese, crumbled
1 egg, lightly beaten
1/4 cup sesame seeds
To make the dough: In a mixer, beat the butter and cream cheese at medium speed until creamy, 4 to 5 minutes. Add flour and 1/4 teaspoon of the salt; mix until dough comes together, about 1 minute. Remove to a lightly floured surface; knead until smooth, about 1 minute. Form into a disk, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate 45 minutes or up to 24 hours.
To make the filling: Place chiles in a bowl; cover with boiling water. Set aside until soft and plump, about 10 minutes. Drain; roughly chop and set aside. In a large skillet over medium heat, heat the oil. Add onion; cook until beginning to brown, about 8 minutes. Add garlic; cook and stir 1 minute. Stir in chiles, vinegar, sugar and remaining salt; cook and stir until heated through, 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer to a bowl; add avocado and cheese. Mix well and season with salt to taste.
To make the empanadas: Preheat oven to 375⁰F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Between two sheets of wax paper, roll out chilled dough until about 1/8-inch thick. With a 4-inch round cookie cutter, cut out 16 rounds. With a pastry brush, lightly brush edges of the rounds with the beaten egg. Divide filling onto centers of the rounds. Fold and lightly stretch one side of each round over the filling to line up with the other edge of the round. With a fork, press edges to seal. Place the empanadas on the baking sheet. Lightly brush tops with the egg; sprinkle with sesame seeds. Bake until golden, 20 to 22 minutes.
YIELD: 16 empanadas
*Courtesy of Chef Pati Jinich of Pati’s Mexican Table on PBS