Empanadas: A Culinary Journey Through Argentina's Heartland

No matter where you find yourself in Argentina, there's probably an empanada nearby. These ubiquitous snacks, simple yet deeply flavorful, offer a bite-size taste of the land and its people. Originating from Spanish colonists five centuries ago, empanadas are a reflection of Argentina's dependence on two staples: wheat flour and beef. Here's a glimpse into the rich and diverse flavors of this beloved dish.


Traditional Argentine Empanadas Recipe:


For the Dough:

- 2 1/2 cups (400g) all-purpose flour

- 5 tablespoons (70g) unsalted butter

- 2/3 cup (170m) lukewarm water

- 1 tablespoon plus 3/4 teaspoon (11g) kosher salt


For the Filling:

- 1/2 pound (250g) beef jerky, torn into strips

- 3 medium onions (650g), chopped

- 3 tablespoons (45ml) vegetable oil

- 1 1/2 cups (225ml) uncooked tomato pureé

- 1 red bell pepper (180g), diced

- 1 green bell pepper (180g), diced

- 1 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper

- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika

- 1 teaspoon fresh thyme, chopped

- 1 teaspoon dried oregano

- 3 large eggs, hardboiled and diced

- Fresh chives (20g), minced

- Kosher salt



Dough Preparation:

  • Whisk flour and salt in a bowl.
  • Add cubed butter and mix until crumbly.
  • Gradually add lukewarm water, and knead until soft dough forms.
  • Rest the dough for 30 mins to 1 hour.

Filling Preparation:

  • Blend beef jerky until fluffy.
  • Cook onion until dark brown.
  • Mix in blended jerky, tomato pureé, peppers, spices, and herbs.
  • Simmer until peppers soften, then cool.
  • Stir in eggs and chives, season if needed.

Forming Empanadas:

  • Preheat oven to 500°F (260°C), grease baking sheet.
  • Divide rested dough into 24 pieces, and shape it into discs.
  • Roll each disc into 4-inch circles.
  • Fill with prepared filling, fold, and crimp edges.


  • Bake for 25 minutes until lightly browned.
  • Cool for 10-15 minutes before serving.

Empanadas offer the taste of Argentina's diverse culinary landscape, from the bustling cities to the remote countryside. With each bite, you'll experience the rich history and vibrant culture that make these savory pastries a beloved tradition.

Enhance your dining experience with Vakiano's exquisite cutlery and table-setting items, complemented perfectly with some hot empanadas.

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