Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Yield: 8-10 medium empanadas
- 4 green (unripe) plantains
- 1 onion
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1 teaspoon garlic salt
- 1 egg yolk
- 2 tablespoon butter or lard
- 1 1/2 cups grated cheese (monterey jack, cheddar, or mozzarella)
- 2 tablespoons cream cheese
- Vegetable oil for frying
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Peel two of the plantains (read more about how to peel green plantains here and cut them into 1 inch pieces.
- Bring a pot of salted water to a boil and cook plantains until tender when pierced with a fork, about 20 minutes.
- While plantains are cooking, sauté onions in vegetable oil with one teaspoon cumin and garlic salt until translucent and fragrant. Set aside and let cool.
- When plantains are tender, drain and place hot plantains in a bowl with the butter (or lard). Mash plantains thoroughly. Add the egg yolk and mix well.
- Peel the remaining two plantains and grate with a cheese grater. Mix the grated plantain into the cooked plantains and knead them together to make a smooth dough. Add a 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a bit of ground pepper to season the dough. If mixture is too dry to come together in a dough, add a little more butter or a tablespoon of water. Cover dough with plastic wrap and let rest for 15 minutes.
- Mix grated cheese with onions and cream cheese to make the filling.
- Take a piece of plantain dough slightly larger than a golf ball and flatten it into a rough circle between to pieces of plastic wrap. Place some of the filling in the middle, then fold the plantain dough over the filling to make a semi-circle. It can help to wet the edges of the circle with water before pressing them together. Shape the dough into a neat semicircle, sealing the edges as much as possible.
- Heat several inches of oil in a deep pan to 360 degrees. Fry empanadas in batches until dark golden brown and crispy. Drain on paper towels. Sprinkle with coarse salt if desired. Serve warm.
Makes 8-10 empanadas.