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Shallot-and-Date Empanadas

The flavor of shallots and dates in these empanadas is enhanced by hints of caraway and thyme.

  • Yield: Makes 12

Source: Martha Stewart Living, November 2003

Ingredients

  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for work surface
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons caraway seeds, coarsely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon table salt
  • 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) chilled unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, well chilled
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 pound shallots, cut lengthwise into sixths
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 6 dried dates, pitted and quartered
  • 2 teaspoons fresh thyme
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1 tablespoon heavy cream

Directions

  1. In a food processor, pulse flour, caraway seeds, sugar, and table salt several times to combine. Add butter and cream cheese; pulse until mixture just begins to come together. (Gently squeeze the dough; if it doesn't hold together, add 1 tablespoon cold water.) Turn out dough onto plastic wrap; flatten into a disk. Wrap, and refrigerate 1 hour.

  2. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper; set aside. Heat oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add the shallots; cook, turning occasionally, until golden, about 10 minutes. Season with coarse salt and pepper; remove skillet from heat.

  3. On a generously floured work surface, roll out dough to 1/8 inch thick. Using a 4-inch cookie cutter, cut out 12 rounds from dough. Brush border of one round with water. Place 2 date quarters in center of round, then top with shallots, dividing evenly. Add a pinch of thyme; season with coarse salt and pepper. Bring three sides up and crimp together in the center, enclosing the filling. Pinch edges to seal. Place on prepared baking sheet. Repeat with remaining dough and filling. Freeze 15 minutes.

  4. In a bowl, beat together egg yolk and cream. Brush empanadas with egg wash. Bake until golden brown, about 30 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Variations

Instead of raw shallots, try using the same quantity of Roasted Shallots. Remove skins and slice into thirds.

Cook's Notes

Unbaked empanadas can be frozen up to 3 weeks; without thawing, bake in a 375 degree oven for about thirty minutes. Baked empanadas can be refrigerated up to 1 day or frozen up to 2 weeks; reheat in a 350 degree oven for fifteen to twenty minutes.

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