A South American classic consisting of baked hand pies with a beef substitute filling and a green spicy pepper dipping sauce.
For the aji verde dipping sauce, combine the following:
1 cup loosely packed cilantro leaves 12 cup loosely packed flat parsley leaves 12 cup loosely packed mint leaves
2 tablespoons minced serrano pepper
1/4 mug water
12 cup soy yogurt bland
1 teaspoon smooth peanut butter
1 tablespoon citrus juice
¼ teaspoon salt
To prepare the filling:
2 teaspoons vegetable oil
1 cup red onion minced
2 minced cloves of garlic
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon pepper
¼ teaspoon cardamom
¼ teaspoon thyme
1 ounce vegan beef broth
¼ cup currants
1 bay leaf 12 Kalamata olives pitted
For the dough:
3 cups flour, plus additional for dusting the surface
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup of pure vegetable fat
1 milligram of white wine vinegar
1 ounce ice water
For the glaze
1/4 cup soy milk for the glaze
How to prepare:
For the aji verde dipping sauce, place cilantro, parsley, mint, serrano peppers, water, and yogurt in a high-speed blender. Purée for 30 seconds. Add peanut butter, lime juice, and salt, and continue to purée for 30 seconds. Place in a small dish and reserve.
Warm vegetable oil for the filling in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add onion and garlic, and cook for approximately 2 minutes, stirring intermittently, until the onion becomes translucent. Using a spatula, incorporate the vegan beef, breaking up any large pieces. Add salt, pepper, cumin, and oregano to taste. Cook for approximately 10 minutes, stirring intermittently, until the vegan beef begins to brown. Incorporate stock, currants, and bay leaf. Bring to a simmer and cook until almost all of the liquid has evaporated, about 5 minutes. Remove the bay leaf from the filling, place it in a receptacle, and set aside.
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
In a large basin, combine flour, salt, shortening, and vinegar for the dough. Utilize a spatula for comprehensive mixing. Continue mixing while gradually adding 2 tablespoons of water. After adding 1/4 cup water, shape dough by hand into a ball in the basin. If the ball loses its shape, add a few additional tablespoons of water. When pulled, the dough ball should have some elasticity and not immediately crumble or split apart. Transfer dough ball to a floured work surface and knead for 1 to 2 minutes, or until it retains a dome-like shape. Form into a log and divide into twelve equal sections.
Using a rolling pin, flatten each portion of dough into rough circles large enough to accommodate a dough cutter with a 6-inch diameter.
To assemble, lay a dozen dough circles with a diameter of 6 inches level on a work surface. Place two tablespoons of filling in the center of each circle, followed by an olive. Water the borders of dough circles using a paintbrush. Fold dough circles in half and press firmly with fingertips to seal the edges.
To braid an empanada, position it on your left palm with the straight edge facing away from you. Grasp the left corner with the index finger and thumb of the right hand, with the index finger on top and the thumb underneath. Turn the right wrist counterclockwise while gingerly pulling the dough with the fingers so that the thumb is on top and a triangle of dough covers the index finger. Repeating from left to right, compress half of the folded triangle.
To bake empanadas, place them in a single layer on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Brush the tops of the empanadas with soy milk, then pierce each one three times with a fork before placing them in the oven. 40-45 minutes, or until empanadas are golden brown and have a firm, plump form. Serve warm with aji verde marinating sauce on the side.