Sunday, 1 April 2012

Parma Ham, Brie and Chilli Empanadas

We wanted Margaritas for our cocktails tonight, as the weather is still unseasonably sunny and warm.  So these little bites were just the ticket to accompany them.  You stamp out circles of puff pastry using 4mm cutters - a sheet of bought puff pastry should yield about 20 circles.  What you stuff these with is up to you, but something with cheese is usually in order.  I chopped about 70g of ripe Brie and put in a bowl with 2 slices of Parma ham that had been finely chopped in a mini-chopper.  To that, I added a teaspoon of hot chilli flakes and about a tablespoon of finely-chopped coriander.  Mash this all together with a fork, and season with black pepper.  Add about 2 teaspoons of beated egg - keep the best for sealing and glazing.  Now divide the mixture between the rounds - don't overfill.  Use some of the egg to seal each into a half-moon shape.  Use the tines of a fork to seal the edges, and glaze with the remaining egg.  Chill for an hour or so, then bake in a hot oven (200C) for 15-17 minutes until puffed and golden.  Allow to cool for a minute or two and consumer greedily!

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