(With the few Filipinas that I have met, very seldom do they experiment with baking, as working with dough is not a popular thing in Filipino households for the mere fact that only a few can afford a stove with an oven. So that in the Philippines, baking is most often done by bakers using big ovens and handling massive doughs which often requires machines, and they have mastered working with yeast and quick breads and cakes. The busy mother would find it more practical to just buy the perfectly baked goods from a nearby bakery or mall on her way home from the office. That meant less hassles and less expenditure for the mother, more profit for the big bakeshops.)
After the Americans have tried the chicken empanada, they wanted the recipe! I gave them my blog address instead, to make teaching easier. Hence, my haste in posting this one. Then Janis had an idea to push through with her catering business plan, seeing that our combined efforts would be able to feed a group of 20-30 people. She and the other Americans can prepare the American dishes, our Burmese friend can prepare Oriental dishes like Lo Mein and Fried Rice and be the bartender, my friend Ana can prepare the cakes (she has mastered that art!), and I will bake the rolls and pies!
The original recipe shared to me by drstel used the following as filling:
2 cloves garlic, chopped fine
1 medium o yellow onion, diced
2 1/2 lbs coarsely chopped chicken, preferably dark meat
1/2 cup cream of asparagus soup
2 diced medium potatoes
1 diced carrot
I had to make adjustments to that because I could not just go out to buy the cream of asparagus. The short notice for the party left me with very little time to include that in my list. So I thought, since the leftover meat from roasted chicken already was packed with flavors, it might not hurt to miss on the cream of asparagus, and the gravy made from the pan juices were also yummy enough and would provide a good cohesive force. The result was very good.
2 cups flour
1/2 cup shortening (stel forgot to include that when I copied; I just looked at other recipes)
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
ice water (enough to make a cohesive ball)
I used leftover chicken meat from roasted chicken (or sautee 1/2 lb chicken meat with 2 cloves garlic and 1 onion, diced), plus
2 medium potatoes, diced
1 carrot, diced
pan juices (1 cup) (substitute:broth)
2 tbsp chicken fat plus 2 tbsp flour(In the absence of broth, may use cream of asparagus and don't use fat and flour any more)
I mixed all dry ingredients together. Using a knife and a spoon, I cut the shortening into the flour mixture (by "cutting," flour coats the sides of the pieces of the fat, until the pieces are smaller, all coated by flour). - Update as of 3/12/09: I now just use my hands to do this. I also use my homemade pork lard.
Some use a pastry blender or two knives. Anything you can think of to do the job will be good enough.
Stop when the texture is crumbly and mealy, like cornmeal.
Teaspoon by teaspoon, add ice water (water in a pitcher with lots of ice swimming) while fluffing with a fork. After about 3- 5 teaspoons, check if the dough will form a ball. Add some more if it cannot stay cohesive yet. Use the smallest amount possible. Chill in the fridge.
(Note: This recipe will make about a dozen empanadas. The filling that I made could be used for 2 dozens empanada, but I used a different dough, a roll recipe, for that other dozen, which I prepared the next day. You may want to double this dough recipe or lessen the filling to suit your needs. I don't suggest freezing the excess filling, because frozen cooked potatoes taste awful.)
Remember my baked/roasted chicken? I chopped the leftover red meat, skin, gizzard, and heart, which amounted to about 2 cups packed. Then I got half of the pan juices (the other half I used for gravy to make sandwiches the next day), reheated it, then added cubed (half-inch cubes) of 2 medium potatoes and a carrot to cook until tender.
In a smaller saucepan, I heated 2 tbsp of chicken fat (the fat that formed on top of the pan juices which I transferred to another jar), then blended it with 2 tbsp flour to make a paste. (I got this idea from the Creamed Beans from bingbing, where she used butter and flour then milk and spices to make a creamy base for beans. I thought, when fluid like broth is added, then something like "cream of [broth flavor]" is made, especially upon addition of milk or cream).
I added the chopped meat to the simmering veggies to heat through. I then adjust the taste by adding sugar, salt and pepper as needed. This is one good way to use leftover meat (from roast chicken, ham, roast beef, etc. Chopped raisins may be added, too.)
If you don't have any leftover meat, just sautee chopped 2 cloves of garlic and 1 medium onions, add chicken pieces to brown then simmer for 10 minutes then chop. Put back into the pan and sautee with diced potatoes and carrots and chopped raisins then add the cream of asparagus (or whatever cream you want to use. Asparagus goes very well with chicken.) and simmer for another 10 minutes.
When chicken filling has cooled, you can then start working on the empanada itself. Form a piece of the chilled dough into a ball the size of pingpong. Sandwich this in between sheets of plastic (here I greased the plastic with shortening, but later I found out that sprinkling with flour is better). Maneuvering is made easier by using plastic.
Starting from the middle, work toward the sides on all directions to make a disk about 5-6 inches diameter. UPDATE: 3/12/09 - A more energy- and time-saver method would be to roll out flat a big piece then cut out using a bowl or an empanada dough press.
Peel off the plastic,
place about a tablespoonful of filling on half of the disk,
Fold over the other half of the disk by flipping the plastic and peel it off,
By small sections, fold the lower crust over the top (fluting?). You may press with fork tines to decorate and seal further). UPDATE as of 3/12/09: When using the dough press, if your dough is too floury to seal, brush the edges with eggwash then seal.
Place on greased baking sheet. Cover with the greased/floured plastic until ready to bake. When baking, pre-heat oven to 400 deg F then prepare 1 egg slightly beaten and mixed with 1 tbsp sugar plus some cream (around 1 tsp). Mix together. (or you may use 1 egg plus 1 tbsp water = eggwash. I just used the egg-sugar combination because that was what was called for in a recipe for holiday dinner rolls that I used for my excess filling).
Use this to coat the empanada before baking.
Pierce with a fork to create vents through which stem may escape during baking. (if you use different fillings, you may use the orientation of the fork marks to differentiate - e.g. horizontal for pure breast meat without veggies, vertical for the rest). Without vents, the crust may puff and create dead space inside, creating the impression that the filling was not enough ("Nagtitipid siguro!")
Bake for 20 minutes (or until golden brown; the filling is cooked already anyway), then cool on a wire rack for at least 2 minutes before serving (filling will be piping hot!)
Para kay jayneh na nag-request ng Tagalog translation:
2 tasang harina
1/2 tasang purico (puting mantekilya; vegetable lard. )
1/2 tasang asukal
1/4 kutsaritang baking powder
1 kutsaritang asin
ice water (tama lang para makabuo ng bola ng dough)
Gumamit ako ng natirang baked chicken na mga 2 tasa ang dami (o kaya ay maggisa 1/2 lb manok sa 2 ipin ng bawang at 1 sibuyas, tinadtad)
2 medium patatas, diced
1 carrot, diced
tinadtad na raisins (1/4 tasa)
pan juices (1 cup; eto yung sabaw sa baked chicken) (pwede gumamit ng chicken broth)
2 kutsarang mantika ng manok galing sa sabaw ng baked chicken or gayatin ang balat ng pino at igisa hanggang magmantika;
2 kutsarang harina
(Kung walang broth, gumamit ng Campbell's cream of asparagus at hwag na gumamit ng taba ng manok na hinaluan ng harina)
Paraan sa paggawa ng dough:
Paghaluin ang harina, asukal, baking powder, asin (eto ang dry ingredients. Gamit ang mga kamay, ihalong maigi ang purico sa dry ingredients. Pag namumuo na ito, unti-unti idagdag ang ice water habang hinahalo ng tinidor. Pag nakapaghalo na ng mga 3-5 kutsaritang ice water, subukan kung makakabuo na ng bola. Dagdagan ng ice water kung hindi pa. Kung nakakabuo na, tama na yung ice water. Balutin ng plastic at ilagay sa refrigerator.
NOTE: Ang recipe ko sa dough ay tama para sa 12 pirasong empanada. Yung recipe ng palaman ay makakagawa ng 24. Pwede mo doblehin yung dough.
Paraan sa paggawa ng palaman:
Pakuluin ang patatas at carrots sa chicken broth hanggang lumambot (wala pang 10 minuto ito; hwag i-overcook dahil pangit naman kagatin pag masyadong malambot at baka madurog lang). Ihalo ang tinadtad na manok hanggang kumulo. Isantabi muna ito.
Sa maliit na saucepan o kaldero, pagmantikain ang balat ng manok (or kunin ang mantika galing sa pinagsabawan ng manok); sa katamtamang init, ihalo ang 2 kutsarang harina at haluin hanggang maging parang paste (roux ang tawag dito). Idagdag ang pinakuluang patatas, carrots, manok at haluing maigi hanggang maging malapot. Ayusin ang lasa sa pagdagdag ng asin, paminta, at asukal. Hayaang lumamig.
(Kung walang tirang manok, maggisa ng 2 ipin ng bawang at 1 medium sibuyas, idagdag ang manok at hayaang mag-brown, takpan at hinaan ang apoy, lutin ng 10 minuto. Tadtarin ang manok, ibalik sa pan at igisa pati ang tinadtad na carrots at patatas. Idagdag ang cream of asparagus o kung anong cream ang gusto mong ihalo, gaya ng cream of chicken. Magdagdag ng konting tubig kung masyadong tuyo ito. Pakuluin ng 10 minuto o hanggang lumambot ang patatas at carrots. Palamigin. )
Pag malamig na ang palaman, ilabas ang dough at i-flat gamit ang rolling pin, umpisahan sa gitna palabas. Mas madali kung merong wax paper or plastic sa ilalim at ibabaw ng dough. Wisikan ng harina kung masyadong madikit.
Gumamit ng bowl o empanada dough press para makahugis ng bilog. Lagyan ng 1 kutsarang palaman sa gitna. Magbati ng isang itlog at ibrush ang itlog sa gilig para magselyo ang dough pagkalagay ng palaman. pwede gamitan ng tinidor para disenyo sa gilid.
Painitin ang oven sa 400 deg F.
Pahiran ng purico ang baking sheet ("plantsa") at ilagay ang mga empanada. Pahiran ng binating itlog (egg wash - pwedeng haluan ng 1 kutsarang gatas at 1 kutsarang asukal) ang ibabaw. Tusuk-tusukin ng tinidor ang ibabaw para sumingaw ang steam at hindi lolobo. I-bake ng 20 minutes o hanggang mag-golden brown ang ibabaw."