I’ve noticed that when we go out into the world on weekends, we spend money. Done. I’ve solved our problem. No seriously though. We met friends for lunch a few weekends ago and we ended up buying a bed. Don’t get me wrong… we are the furthest thing from impulse buyers. Before that day, we had shopped and shopped and shopped until I didn’t ever want to look at another piece of bedroom furniture again. It was just a coincidence that the restaurant our friends chose just happened to be across the street from a West Elm, which happened to have the bed we were considering, and after seeing it in person I was sold. Now I’m done with that purchase for life…until the next round, at least. Woo hoo!
So back to my thing about us spending money. I’ve been getting really creative about using up leftovers because I’m trying to keep us on track for our grocery bill each month. So far, I’ve been doing pretty well. After making these, I’d say I’m stepping up in the leftover-world because this was one of the best creations to come out of my kitchen in a while. Yep, I said it.
The dough was the second half of a batch leftover from having made a pie and the soyrizo was leftover from burritos the night before. I buy black beans dry and had cooked them up a few days previous. I like to have beans on hand to sneak some extra protein into our meals throughout the week, plus bean burritos are my go-to quick lunch. So really, everything was already made. I’m sure next time, some chicken or any other filling that I have left over will get used up.
If you don’t have dough on hand, check out this great tutorial here. To be honest, I think store bought may work for these, but you would have to use round cutters instead of rolling them out like I did.
Half a batch of pastry dough, thawed if frozen, but still chilled
11/2 cups cooked soyrizo
1 cup black beans, cooked
¼ cup queso fresco
2 tablespoons butter, melted
Preheat your oven to 375 F degrees
Make sure your pastry dough is still chilled. Divide in half, and in half again, and so on, until you have 16 equal pieces of dough. I found that keeping the rest of the dough I wasn’t working with in the refrigerator was very helpful. This dough gets very sticky as it comes to room temp.
Roll out a small piece of dough to about an ⅛ of an inch thick, keeping it as equally oval as possible. Place about a tablespoon of soyrizo towards the bottom half of the oval. Add a few teaspoons of black beans on top of the soyrizo and top the pile with queso fresco. Fold over the top of the dough so that it covers the filling, lining up the edges as equally as possible. Trim away any large excess, but a bit of extra dough is fine. Seal the edges together with the tines of a fork. Transfer to a baking sheet lined with silpats or parchment paper.
When all empanadas are complete, melt two tablespoons of butter in the microwave or a small saucepan. Brush over the tops of each empanada. Sprinkle each with a bit of coarse salt and a sprinkle of pepper.
Bake for 16-18 minutes until edges begin to golden. Serve warm.