Looking for something in particular?

Thursday, June 10, 2010

6 minute Fruit Empanadas

(cream cheese + berries) > omelet

Previously this week I started a dreadfully boring post about omelets because I said I would talk about eggs this month. But this recipe came about so suddenly that I don't think I would be able to make it through a boring post about omelets (sorry Omelet). It is probably because I love fruit more than eggs, especially summer fruit like strawberries. So, I made a test batch of "Strawberry Salsa" with cinnamon sugar tortilla chips to enjoy at work instead and pushed omelets back to some unidentifiable day this month. The salsa was okay, lacking any real zip or complexity, but the chips were AMAZING. Buttering up a tortilla and sprinkling it generously with cinnamon sugar before subjecting it to a blazing hot boiler means one thing: awesome. The moment I tasted one of those coy little triangles I knew they could be so much more than mere chips.

In high school my Spanish teacher, whose Cuban parents were the proud owners of a local hot spot for pork, plantains and everything fried, would make us empanadas with guava and cream cheese. I loved the hot, oozy bubbles of cream cheese and sweet guava that oozed out of the buttery, fried shell after the first bite. Sadly though, I'm not Cuban and the idea of frying homemade dough in six inches of boiling hot oil makes me nervous. Luckily, I'm not alone. A brief Internet search and a endearing article later I was in business (the empanada business that is). If you are looking for a healthy option just use a wheat tortilla, low-fat cream cheese and a little margarine in place of the ingredients below. These "pasteles" take mere minutes to make and would be really scrumptious for breakfast. After one taste you won't ever go to your 8am hungry again!

So say hello to caramelized, buttery tortilla shells sprinkled with cinnamon sugar and filled with bubbly cream cheese and jammy berries. The one catch is that the seal on the tortilla will not be water proof so beware of hot, delicious berry juices that drip out.

Serves 2

2 six inch flour tortillas
2 tablespoon melted butter
1/2 cup diced strawberries
2 ounces cream cheese, softened slightly
2 tablespoons raisins, roughly
1 tablespoon orange juice
1/2 teaspoon orange zest
2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon

1. Cut up the strawberries and place in a bowl with the orange juice, zest. Sprinkle with a 1/4 - 1/2 teaspoon sugar if the berries are tart.
2. Place the raisins in a small heat proof bowl with enough boiling water to cover them. Let soak until they are plump. Then, drain and add the raisins to the strawberry mixture.
3. Preheat your broiler to high.
5. Brush one side of a tortilla with the melted butter and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar. Flip (so that un buttered side is face up) and place a slice of cream cheese on one half of the tortilla.
6. Add 2 tablespoons of the fruit mixture on top of the cream cheese. Using your finger, smooth some butter along the perimeter of the tortilla to act as a glue.
7. Fold the second half over to cover the fruit and cheese, pressing down to seal. Press firmly with a fork to keep the emapanda closed. Place on a baking sheet and repeat with remaining tortillas.
8. Place the tortillas on the second rack from the top beneath the broiler. Broil for 1-2 minutes, keeping a close eye on them (it is best not to step away). When the tortilla is puffy and the sugar is caramelized flip and broil for another 2 minutes until both sides are crispy.

Serve immediately.


  1. Will definitely be trying this when my boyfriend comes down this weekend! Thanks for the recipe!

  2. Aw great! Let me know if you find quirks. I successfully made two batches of these today but I'm always happy to get suggestions!