Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas!

So this post is coming a little late, as I'm sure every has already held their Christmas parties or if your party is tonight, a menu has already been planned. But the food I served isn't especially Christmas-y, so I would recommend it for any time of the year. I made empenadas as the main event, served with rice. I changed up the empenada filling from my original recipe. And for dessert, ginger sandwich cookies with cream cheese frosting and an eggnog cheesecake. I never got a photo of the eggnog cheesecake, but the recipe can be found on the side of Silk Nog. It's delicious, trust me. We also held a secret Santa at my party and I pulled my good friend Manny, the tres leches lover. So what better to make as a gift than an entire tres leches, just for him? I couldn't think of anything better, so that's what I made. It was a lot of cooking, but it was worth it.

Revised Empenadas:
  • 2 packages regular size empenadas
  • 1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 can rotel tomatoes, drained
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 small bell pepper, diced
  • 2-3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 1 teaspoon coriander
  • 1 tablespoon fresh cilantro, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • Oil for frying
In a saute pan, saute the onion and bell pepper until soft. Add garlic. Stir in black beans and tomatoes. Heat the beans and tomatoes. Stir in spices and cilantro. Turn off the heat and let the mixture cool. Using a large cutting board, make your empenada assembly station. Flour the cutting board. Lay out the empenada discs. Fill with roughly a tablespoon of filling, sprinkle with cheese. Fold over and seal edges with a fork. Do this until all 20 empenadas are done. Once the empenadas are assembled, heat a large pan and add oil up to half an inch in the pan. Fry empenadas three at a time, roughly 1-2 minutes on each side, until light golden brown. Set on a plate lined paper towels. Serve hot.

Cilantro Lime Rice:
  • 1 1/2 cups white rice
  • 3 cups of water
  • 1-2 tablespoons fresh, minced cilantro
  • 1/2 of a lime
Heat water til boiling, add rice. Turn heat down, cook for about 20 minutes until rice is tender. When rice is done, stir in cilantro. Squeeze the lime over the rice. Stir and serve along side the empenadas.

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