Swiss Chard Empanadas

Course : Vegetables
Serves: 6
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2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup lard or unsalted butter -- chilled
2 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter -- chilled
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup ice water
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large white onion -- diced
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1 pound Swiss chard -- trimmed
3/4 cup grated Cotija -- Romano or Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup grated asadero or Manchego or Monterey Jack cheese
1 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1 large egg -- beaten, for glaze
1 teaspoon Freshly cracked pepper

Preparation / Directions:

Prepare the Swiss chard by trimming and cutting the leaves into small pieces and stems cut into 1/2-inch dice. To make the dough, in a bowl, combine the flour, lard, butter and salt. Mix lightly with your fingers until the mixture forms pea-sized pieces. Using a fork, stir in the ice water, a little at a time, until a dough forms, and then knead lightly until it comes together in a ball. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or as long as overnight. To make the filling, in a large frying pan over medium heat, warm the olive oil. Add the onion, salt and pepper and sauté until the onion is soft and begins to turn lightly golden, 7-10 minutes. Add the chard stems and cook for 1-2 minutes. Then add the chard leaves and cook, stirring, until tender, 3-4 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and let cool. Add the cheeses and lime juice and mix well. Taste and adjust the seasonings. To assemble the empanadas, on a lightly floured board, roll out the dough about 1/8 inch (3 mm) thick. Using a 3-inch (7.5-cm) round cookie cutter, cut out 12 rounds. Place about 2 tablespoons of the filling on one-half of each round, leaving a 1/2-inch (12-mm) border. Dampen the edges of the dough with a little of the egg glaze, then fold the dough over to enclose the filling. Seal the edges by pressing firmly with the tines of a fork. Arrange the empanadas on a tray, cover with plastic wrap and chill for at least 30 minutes or up to 3 days before baking. Preheat an oven to 350°F (180°C). Place the empanadas on a baking sheet. Brush the tops with the egg glaze and sprinkle with cracked pepper. Using a sharp knife, cut 2 or 3 small slits in the top of each empanada to allow steam to escape. Bake until golden, about 30 minutes. Transfer to a rack to cool. Serve warm or at room temperature. Preparation Time: 2 hours 45 minutes Makes twelve 3-inch (7.5-cm) empanadas


Nutritional Information:

278 Calories (kcal); 11g Total Fat; (33% calories from fat); 7g Protein; 40g Carbohydrate; 44mg Cholesterol; 529mg Sodium

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