A favorite around this house is empanadas. However, I don't always want to drag the mixer and pasta attachment out to make the dough. In fact, I usually don't want to!!! So I decided to experiment with a shortcut. Refrigerated pie crust! Worked like a charm. Hubs and I loved it.
Here's the recipe:
Brown 1 pound ground beef with a small diced red bell pepper, a small diced onion, some minced garlic and a teaspoon or two of ground cumin. Drain off grease and add salt and pepper to taste and a few sprigs of fresh parsley, finely chopped. Set aside to cool.
Roll out 2 refrigerated crusts (1 box thawed). I use Pillsbury. Roll them somewhat thin. Using a 4 or 4 1/2 inch circle (I used my 2 cup measuring cup turned upside down) cut out circles. Put a small amount of the ground beef mix on one half of a circle which has a dab of water wiped around the edge. Fold over and seal the edges, then crimp with a fork. Do this with all the crust circles. Place on a waxed paper lined baking sheet and refrigerate for a short time. Prick each empanada a couple of times with a fork.
Add oil to a Dutch oven, deep enough to fry the empanadas. I used canola oil. Heat to 350 to 360 degrees. Fry a few empanadas at a time for about four minutes or till golden brown. Drain on paper towels. Makes about 14. There will be meat mixture leftover. Serve with desired dips such as fire-roasted salsa, Ranch dip or pineapple salsa.