Ingredients

1 package of vegan mince/textured soy
1 onion
Olive oil, as required
Paprika or pimentón dulce, as required (I put on a lot, like around 5 full spoons)
12 Empanada sheets (you can buy this at any Argentinian store, or use ready rolled puff pastry and cut circles of 10-12 cms diameter)
8 or 10 green olives
Salt and pepper

Instructions

1.Heat some olive oil on a pan and cook the chopped onion on medium/low heat until sauteé and transparent.
2.Add the vegan mince (dehydrate previously as instructed on package if required, if it is quorn just add it directly) and cook it for around 8 minutes together with the onion, adding salt, pepper, and the paprika or pimentón dulce on top. I add quite a lot to make it spicy! The vegan meat cooking will vary depending on the vegan mince used, but you need to keep in mind that it needs to be not too dry, not too soft (just as mince!). Also, add some hot water as you are cooking it: the preparation should have a bit of liquid left, which is the typical red juice that you get on empanadas, which is the oil mixed with the paprika!
3.Let the preparation cool down. Once cold, add the chopped olives. Some people love to add raisins as well, for me that is sacrilege!
4.To prepare the empanadas, put your finger on a put of water and touch the borders of the dough circle (this is make it easier to close them!) and put some of the filling inside (around 1 full spoon). First close the dough in half and press the borders firmly to close it smoothly, and then you can either use a fork to finish the closure, or go all Argentinian with a "repulgue"! This video shows different versions (it's in spanish but all you need to do is watch! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OnaXrtfyJMc)
5.Put them on a previously oiled oven pan, and cook them on 180 degrees for around 20 minutes, until the dough is slightly golden on top!
6.How Argentinian are you feeling now on a scale from 1 to 10?

50 SHADES OF EMPANADAS

You can prepare empanadas of many different flavours: corn with alfredo sauce (called “humita”), spinach, no-chicken, vegan cheese, tomato and basil, there are a million flavours! I have tried and veganaised most of them already throughout my life! However, today I’ll teach you how to make vegan meat empanadas: the vegan version of the most typical of them all!

IT’S ALL ABOUT THE COOKING OF THE (NO) MEAT

The best way to replace mince is with textured soy: end of story. The texture is the same, and you can easily make it taste like mince seasoning it the right way.

If you use a brand of textured soy that is dried and requires previous dehydration, it is key to make sure you dry it very well before cooking it. This will change the texture dramatically, and if it is watery, it will become too soft and it will not taste like empanadas mince!

Also, if you use quorn (it works very well but has egg so it would be vegetarian and not vegan), you should add some boiling water to it as you are cooking it so it doesn’t get too dry, and you get the “paprika juice”that makes empanadas taste so good!

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