These Cuban picadillo-filled empanadas are a favorite at our family parties!
Empanadas are a favorite snack of many Cubans. We fill them up with guava, guava and cheese, and other fruit marmalades and preserves as well as with meat or vegetables.
Picadillo is a 100% Cuban comfort food and one of my favorite dishes. It’s ground beef cooked with olives and raisins which give it a unique sweet and sour touch.
Cuban picadillo-filled empanadas combine the goodness of a deliciously crispy fried dough with the richness of the picadillo to create a decadent, yet super-easy-to-make side dish. I make them for birthday parties and other celebrations such as Noche Buena and they fly off the plate.
Below are the steps for this recipe and I warn you, these are addictive!
- 1 pound of ground beef (I always use 96% lean ground beef)
- 4 cloves of garlic
- 2 tablespoons of olive oil
- 1/2 onion, chopped (I use white or yellow onions)
- 1/3 cup of dry wine
- 2 cups of water
- 1/3 cup of tomato paste
- 1/3 cup of red bell pepper, chopped
- 1/3 cup of pimiento-stuffed Spanish olives, chopped
- 1/3 cup of raisins
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon ground oregano
- 1 beef stock cube
- Pinch of salt (I use less than 1/2 a teaspoon)
Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat and add the ground beef. Make sure to stir frequently in order to brown all of the beef until it is no longer pink. This takes about 10 minutes. Stir in the onion, garlic, and red pepper and saute it all together for about 5 minutes.
Add the dry wine, water, tomato paste, raisins, ground cumin, ground oregano, salt and beef stock cube. Stir it all together and cover skillet with lid. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook for 20 minutes. You want to make sure that the simmering liquid is thoroughly cooking the beef and making it as soft as possible.
- 1 package of frozen dough discs
- vegetable oil
Defrost the frozen dough discs. I usually have them out for about 1 hour to make sure they are thoroughly defrosted.
Place enough oil in a frying pan and while that oil is heating up start filling the empanadas with about 2 tbsp of picadillo each.
Fold the edges of the dough using your hands. Use a fork to press down around the edges, from one end to the other, and seal the empanada.
Deep fry the empanada over medium heat until golden brown.