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Butternut Squash and Goat Cheese Empanadas

Combine the flavors of fall in these hand-held vegetarian delights.


Butternut Squash and Goat Cheese Empanadas - Photo by Megan Myers (HobbyFarms.com)
Photo by Megan Myers

Feel free to try a combination of lard and butter in the empanada dough, but be aware that lard crusts are often more delicate and crumbly.

Yield: 12 empanadas

Ingredients

  • 2½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1½ tsp. salt, divided
  • 16 T. chilled unsalted butter (8 ounces), cut into small chunks
  • 4 to 8 T. ice water
  • 1 tsp. olive oil
  • 1/4 cup diced onion
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 tsp. cumin
  • 1/4 tsp. cardamom
  • 1/4 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp. paprika
  • 1 cup puréed butternut squash
  • 3 ounces goat cheese
  • 1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
  • 1 egg, beaten with 1 T. water

Preparation
In food processor, pulse together flour, 1/2 teaspoon salt and butter until mixture resembles pea-sized crumbs. Add ice water, 1 tablespoon at a time, until dough comes together. You’ll likely have leftover water.

Turn dough onto floured surface, divide in half, and form each half into 6-inch disc. Wrap discs in plastic and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F, and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

Heat olive oil in small sauté pan over medium heat. Add onion and garlic, and sauté about 2 minutes. Stir in cumin, cardamom, ginger and paprika; cook until fragrant, about 3 to 5 minutes; let cool slightly.

Mix onions, squash and goat cheese, leaving some large chunks of goat cheese intact. Add pepper and remaining salt to taste.

On floured surface, roll out dough to approximately 1/8-inch thick. Using 4-inch round cookie or biscuit cutter, cut dough, rerolling scraps as needed.

Place 1 tablespoon filling in center of each circle, then fold dough in half so edges meet. Crimp with fork, and place on baking sheet.

Brush empanadas with beaten egg and bake for 25 minutes or until golden brown.

 

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